An Industry-Wide Shift to Electric Vehicles and Its Impact on Automotive Packaging

Why the automotive packaging industry is undergoing a transformation to meet the needs of the EV market.

From the first steam-powered vehicles to hit the road in the late 1700s, to the internal-combustion engines that built America’s automotive industry, the automobile has seen great technological advancements. Today, we’re continuing to see cars move the industry forward as greener, and more sustainable technologies are used to develop electric vehicles.

Electric vehicle only green traffic road sign.

Where is the Industry Headed?

Some of the world’s largest vehicle manufacturers are acknowledging the shift to electric with open arms. Volvo Cars is committed to distributing one million electrified cars into the market by the year 2025. Ford Media Center has reported that by mid-2026, 100% of the company’s passenger vehicles in Europe will have zero-emissions capabilities which means they will be either all-electric or plug-in hybrid, and by 2030 they will be completely and solely powered by electricity.

And it doesn’t stop there.

GM is on a path towards an all-electric future too, as they have committed to building 30 new global electric vehicles by 2025. At Toyota, Deputy Chief Officer of it’s ZEV Factory said in a presentation for its European market that the automotive manufacturer intends to sell 5.5 million electrified vehicles each year across the globe, by 2025. Even Honda is committing to the electric vehicle moving forward, as it was reported by Autoweek that the company will go electric and fuel-cell only by 2040.

All of these monumental changes are set to occur within our lifetime. Some will even happen by the end of this decade. These new electric vehicles and their manufacturers require durable and reliable material handling to transport heavy parts and components throughout their supply chains. Since they’ve placed a focus on going greener with the electric vehicle, these material handling options should be reusable too. This is exactly where TriEnda comes into play.

Battery Pack

TriEnda’s Electric Vehicle Component Packaging

At TriEnda, we specialize in developing reusable material handling solutions, and dedicate ourselves to understanding the automotive industry and the complex set of requirements that come with manufacturing a vehicle.

One important electric vehicle component that will require durable transportation is the battery cell. TriEnda specializes in creating custom battery packaging solutions. Our first battery packs were developed in 2014 when a customer approached us to design a lithium-ion cell pack. Since then, we’ve created three additional battery pack designs. First were complete battery assembly packs that fully encapsulate and protect batteries during shipments. Next came battery section reman packs that are used to transport re-manufactured battery sections to dealers or service centers where the battery section is placed in the battery assembly. The last design was the standard car battery packs which believe it or not hold standard car batteries that are shipped from the battery manufacturer before going to the assembly plant for installation into the vehicle.

TriEnda’s battery packs provide total enclosed protection of battery cells and are nestable for empty storage and return. Their heavy-duty HDPE construction increases strength, durability, and makes them impact resistant. The thermoformed plastic material used in the manufacturing process allows for easy cleaning of the battery packs and makes it so you can continually reuse them in you supply-chain. They can be manufactured with ergonomic options should you require optimal efficiency during loading and unloading. We can assemble the battery packs with lift assist and handles to improve ergonomics. Another perk is that are packs are designed with UN Certifiability in mind as we ensure these packaging options meet rigorous road impact testing requirements.

We’ve accomplished all of this through the power of our engineering teams that specialize in designing battery packs and being well versed in their certification needs. Our teams know the right questions to ask during the design process, and have extensive knowledge built up from past products in a variety of industries. That’s just the first of many benefits you take advantage of with one of the largest engineering teams in the thermoformed plastic manufacturing industry.

If you’re interested in working with us to develop custom battery packaging solutions, reach out to us today and a member of our team will be in touch! We’re eager to help move the automotive industry forward by providing top-of-the-line material handling solutions for the new age of electric vehicles.

An Introduction to KFI’s In-House Design Team: Studio 540

designer drawing

Studio 540 is KFI’s internal design studio, capable of providing insight into projects that require ergonomic and aesthetic innovation. 

Studio 540 is KFI’s in-house design studio. With skilled industrial designers and animation specialists, Studio 540 offers services to KFI customers that few other organizations can. From 3D renderings and CAD modeling to virtual reality presentations and concept animation videos, Studio 540 goes above and beyond for KFI’s customers.

Through an established design process and thorough communication, Studio 540 creates sketches, models, animation, virtual reality environments, and brings real products to life.

Step One:

Ideation- The first step in the Studio 540 process is always ideation. A good product is conceived by addressing consumer needs and improving products through innovation. Once a business case is established, Studio 540 begins multi-departmental collaboration and offers an array of solutions in the form of expressive sketches.

Step Two:

Sketching- Our designs then consider the many facets of a project and create the first depictions of the product through sketches. Aesthetics, mechanics, ergonomics, assembly and manufacturability are further explored with refined sketches. Sketches are styled to reflect skid resistant surfacing and visual strength. Ergonomics considerations are developed to solve the end user’s needs.

Step Three:

CAD Modeling- Sketching is followed by a more technical creation of the product through CAD Modeling. Studio 540’s design team is capable of realizing 3D forms through solid/surface modeling techniques.  High fidelity CAD models help the Engineering team incorporate design aesthetics into the final product.

Step Four:

Rendering- Moving on to the rendering step in the process means building on the 3D models and creating realistic digital creations. Photorealistic images enhance CAD data with simulated light, advanced materials and camera perspective. Renderings of both existing and conceptual products are essential for effective marketing and are one of Studio 540’s specialties.

On the Desk Computer With CAD Software and Design of 3D Industrial Machinery Component. In the Background Robot Arm Concept Standing in Heavy the Dark.Industry Engineering Facility.

 

Step Five:

Model Making- The fifth step focuses on preemptively identifying and solving conceptual issues through Model Making. Improving the ergonomics of conceptual products can be addressed early on with model making.  Using foamcore, 3D printing and metal fabrication, costly problems can be proactively identified and solved before tooling is made.

 

Step Six:

Virtual Reality- After a model is approved, the Studio 540 designers bring the product to life through Virtual Reality. Full-scale CAD data from Studio 540 or the Engineering team can be dropped into vehicles and environments for an immersive exploratory experience.  Ergonomic considerations can be easily explored through Virtual Reality capabilities.

 

Step Seven:

Animation- Lastly, our skilled designers create unique animated pieces to showcase product capabilities.  3D animations exhibiting the functionality, style and innovation of products are an indispensable tool for promoting and communicating our product capabilities to consumers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DEouPdoDRkY

 

What to Look for in a Plastic Pallet Manufacturer

2 workers talking with hardhats on

Discover which traits are key when choosing a plastic pallet producer.

If you’re in the market for a new plastic pallet manufacturer or plastic pallet distributor, you will likely have questions about selecting the best one for your business. You want to be sure whatever company you partner with has quality products and is responsive to your questions and needs.

In search of a plastic pallet manufacturer or distributor, it’s important to keep these things in mind:

  • Commitment to quality
  • Custom solution capabilities
  • Focus on safety
  • Environmental responsibility
  • Dedicated team

When your product’s safety and security are on the line, it’s critical to ensure that you are choosing the right manufacturer for your shipping and storage needs. Read on to learn more about the qualities to look for when looking for a new plastic pallet manufacturer or distributor.

Commitment to quality

The products you’re shipping and storing are valuable, so you’ll want to protect them with a high-quality material handling solution. At TriEnda, we are dedicated to delivering the highest standard of products. Our plastic pallets are designed with durability in mind which means that the material is impact and weather-resistant, while also being sanitary and easy to clean. Our custom resin and vertical integration approach to manufacturing means you’ll receive the highest quality product possible, every time.

Custom solution capabilities

Every business’ needs are unique, so the products your plastic pallet manufacturer offers to you should be too. Our pallets are engineered and constructed for use in various industries including automotive, retail, and grocery. Need further customization? TriEnda is home to one of the largest in-house engineering teams in the industry. Our team of engineers are here to help design and create a plastic pallet solution according to your requirements. From load types and configurations to tailored designs for identification and tracking technologies, learn more about the custom design inputs we use to ensure the material handling solution you choose will meet your needs.

Focus on safety

From their manufacturing floor to your business, safety should be a top priority for the plastic pallet distributor you select. Look for a company that has ISO 9001 certification and is continuously focused on improving the safety of their manufacturing process. At TriEnda, we’re ISO 9001:2015 certified and are always looking out for our team’s safety. Our plastic pallets are also designed with your team’s safety in mind, built to nest and stack safely and, in some cases, prevent slippage with our TruGrip ™ technology. We have also developed solutions that include ergonomic handholes to help increase efficiency and safety for the end user.

Environmental responsibility

When it comes to plastic packaging solutions, look for a manufacturer who understands their responsibility to the environment, and strives to develop eco-friendly procedures and best practices. We are proud to be part of the Reusable Packaging Association and offer a pallet buy-back program to reuse and recycle old pallets. All the scrap and trim material that accumulate in our facility is recycled for reuse in production. Every day, half of the plastic sheeting we create is composed of reused materials from our in-house recycling efforts.

Dedicated team

Your plastic pallet manufacturer should be prepared to answer your questions and suggest solutions that meet your organization’s needs. At TriEnda, our team is ready to work with you on any sort of custom plastic pallet or material handling solution that best fit your product and business. Our team is passionate about the work they do, and we’d love to work with you.

Are you ready to discover why we are the right plastic pallet manufacturer and plastic pallet distributor for you? Contact our sales team online or give us a call today at 800.356.8150.

4 Things You Need to Know About Machine Tooling Repair

Discover how our in-house machine tooling repair service works.

As a leading plastic pallet manufacturer, our in-house machine tooling repair service helps us maintain and repair your tools to ensure production-ready status. Look into what this service does, how it all works, who can benefit from it, and the advantages you can expect from machine tooling repair.

Our machine tooling services

Regularly updated and well-maintained tools are necessary to create custom material handling solutions. By using the latest technology, we can manipulate tooling in-house to meet your ever-changing needs.

We proudly offer the following machine tooling services:

• Machining: Shape tool into specified design
• Welding: Fuse tool for long-lasting results
• Fabrication: Custom tooling solutions
• Upgrades: Improve the current tool
• Modifications/Maintenance: Implement changes that improve tool performance
• Machine Tooling Repair: Mend any damage in the tool

We can form the tool’s gauge/material thickness anywhere from .060 inches to .450 inches, depending on your request. Contact us to learn more about the tooling services we provide.

Our machine tooling repair process

When you choose to take advantage of our in-house machine tooling repair services, you’ll find an unmatched consistency in what we do. We follow the same step-by-step process every time:

1. We start by going over the specifications of the tool.
2. We take note of the requested changes and ask for the CAD data and blueprints or drawings.
3. Once we have all the required information, we create a quote.
4. Upon your approval of the quote, we begin to generate parts for your review.
5. You have the option to provide a purchase order up-front or make the payment after the sample parts meet your satisfaction.

Our process is easy, accurate, and streamlined, so you can focus on what you do best.

Who can benefit from our machine tooling service?

If you already have tooling on-site at our facilities, we can easily make any adjustments required to meet your specifications. However, if you don’t currently have tooling on-site at our facilities, you can still utilize our services. Our team of engineers have developed a reverse engineering process that allows us to re-create any tool. Once the tool is re-created, we then keep it on hand which allows us to implement any future changes to welding, fabrication, upgrades, or modifications based on your needs.

What are the advantages of machine tooling repair?

When you move forward with our machine tooling service, you will also enjoy the following advantages:

• Easily upgrade tools to a new level
• Efficient repair of molds
• Maintenance and modification as needed
• On-site welding and fabrication
• Convenient access to our “one-stop-shop” for all product needs

We take great pride in our work, and it shows. At every step of the process, you can rest comfortably knowing that our talented teams will use the latest technologies and advancements to prepare your tooling for production. We are committed to quality and lead the way in the material handling industry and custom products.

As your needs continually shift, so does our product and service offering. You can count on us to provide the products and services you need to keep your supply chain running smoothly. Contact our sales team online or call 800.356.8150 today to learn more about how our machine tooling repair service can benefit your company.

Sustainable Material Handling Solutions and Tips

plastic pallet up close

Introduce greener practices with these sustainability-focused ideas for your facility.

reusable plastic crate

Every person and organization on our planet has a certain level of responsibility to implement the most sustainable practices and solutions to help preserve our natural resources. For us, this starts with engineering and manufacturing reusable plastic pallets and crates. By optimizing them for durability, they can last for up to 50 trips. When our products have reached the end of their useful life, we recycle them responsibly and reuse 100% of the material to make new products. Exploring the switch to sustainable plastic pallets and crates, as well as other sustainability-focused ideas for a greener operation can help your organization and planet in a myriad of ways including:
• Swap expendable packaging with reusable plastic pallets and crates
• Prioritize energy efficiency
• Reduce fuel consumption
• Consider waste management alternatives

Swap expendable packaging with reusable plastic pallets and crates

If you’re looking for ways to reduce expendable packaging, switching to reusable plastic pallets and crates is the first step. Doing so can help keep billions of tons of waste out of the already-overloaded recycling centers and landfills. We also offer a plastic pallet recycling program where we buy back your pallets and issue a credit toward a future order. Beyond environmental responsibility, plenty of additional benefits come with making the switch to sustainable material handling solutions, including:
• Increased durability and longer life
Reduced long-term costs
• Stackable pallets and crates allow for more containers on each load
• Nestable solutions require less storage square footage in your facility
• Better ergonomics reduce the risk of worker injury

While reusable plastic pallets and crates have a higher initial cost, they last much longer than wooden pallets. They are highly durable and can handle more turns than traditional shipping solutions. When you don’t need to order pallets or crates as often, your long-term savings directly benefits your bottom line.

Prioritize energy efficiency

In addition to using sustainable material handling solutions, you can also implement other green practices in your facility, such as prioritizing energy efficiency. When saving energy is a priority, simple changes can go a long way. Try these energy-saving tips at your facility:
• Use LED and natural lighting instead of traditional light sources
• Leave only critical equipment running when your operation is closed
• Power equipment back on in phases to avoid a drastic start-up energy spike
• Clean and maintain equipment regularly
• Optimize air compressors
• Audit HVAC equipment for efficiency
• Consider alternative energy sources
• Provide energy-efficiency training for employees

Reduce fuel consumption

Depending on the industry, fuel consumption can be an extraordinary drain on economic and environmental resources. If you’re concerned about optimizing fuel efficiency, reducing cost, and the environmental impact, this article contains 50 ways to reduce your fuel spend. From reducing idling times to ‘greening’ your fleet, there are many ways to lower fuel costs and their effect on the environment.

Consider waste management alternatives

Everyone has heard of “reduce, reuse, recycle” practices for home. However, many organizations can benefit from implementing these waste management practices at their facilities as well. When it comes to your material handling solutions, here are a few suggestions for implementing waste management alternatives at work:
• Reduce waste from expendable packaging by switching to reusable packaging
• Reuse material handling solutions, such as plastic pallets and crates, as many times as possible
• Recycle plastic pallets and crates when they’ve reached the end of their useful life

Beyond material handling solutions, you can look for ways to adopt the reduce-reuse-recycle strategy in other areas of your business, like recycling in your facilities.

We are the leading sustainable material handling solutions manufacturer in the industry. Contact our sales team online or call 800.356.8150 today to learn more about our reusable plastic pallets and crates that are eligible for our sustainable plastic pallet recycling program.

Quick Action Emergency Relief Products for Covid-19

hospital bed

hospital bed

Amid the global pandemic, we were called upon to meet an unprecedented challenge: the potential shortage of emergency hospital beds. By creating a strategic partnership with our sister brand, Penda, creating innovative design, and working for quick production Kruger Family Industries was able to deliver an affordable, durable Emergency & Disaster Relief Bed. Following the logical need for socially distanced and virus-safe spaces, we also created custom room dividers as a sanitary solution for disaster relief environments and businesses requiring safety barriers.

As the COVID-19 virus reached the United States and began to spread rapidly, national and global health officials came to a clear conclusion: without intervention, hospitals and health care facilities would face extreme shortages of critical supplies. This included protective gear, medical equipment, and hospital beds. As the number of infected patients rose, health care professionals raced to stock up in preparation for the worst-case scenarios modeled by public health experts.

Another challenge for many area businesses reopening after COVID-19 shutdowns centered on keeping their environments sanitary and patrons safely distanced. Restaurants, salons, and offices desperately sought out affordable solutions that would allow them to open for business while ensuring they abide by the necessary safety precautions.

After healthcare officials put out warnings of hospital bed shortages, we formed a critical partnership with our sister brand Penda, which is also part of parent company Kruger Family Industries (KFI). Acutely aware of the need for immediate action, our engineering and product development teams quickly got to work designing the new durable, cost-effective, easy-to-assemble Emergency & Disaster Relief Bed. Teaming up the expertise of both TriEnda and Penda enabled us to leverage our collective skills and knowledge to quickly assess the situation and find a strategic solution.

To improve comfort and safety in alternative care environments and other businesses, we also developed affordable, easy to assemble and install Custom Room Dividers. They offer a sanitary option for privacy not only in disaster relief environments and crowded care facilities, but also lend safe social distance barriers in barbershops, salons, restaurants, offices, and more.

 

Humanitarian bed

When accounting for the critical care environments in which emergency hospital relief beds and wall dividers would be used, our designers knew they had to focus on several essential factors including safety and durability, ease of assembly, comfort and safety, and affordability.

The Emergency & Disaster Relief Bed and Custom Wall Dividers are easy to sanitize and disinfect due to the smooth, simple-to-clean surfaces. The bed’s thick, 6” hospital-grade mattress has a removable plastic covering with a zipper. Crafted with strong HDPE surface areas and heavy-duty powder-coated steel frames, the relief beds are built to last. Sturdy extruded aluminum metal supports and HDPE walls provide long-lasting durability for room dividers as well.

During a health crisis, we knew it was essential that anyone on staff could complete a fast and easy setup of this product. Emergency hospital beds can be quickly assembled on-site in just a few minutes without using any tools or having specialized knowledge. Our engineering and quality teams have determined a single room with three standard walls can be set up and ready within 15 minutes using standard tools.

The emergency hospital bed product features multi-position back support up to 800 lbs to provide comfort and safety for every patient. Swing-arm side rails allow health care providers easy access to patients and a safety lock for patient security, as needed. Built-in IV bag stand placements and strategically placed handles make it easier to move beds around without the hassle of separate IV stands. Additionally, the bed’s height is ergonomically designed to better support the comfort of patients and health care workers.

Our emergency relief products are low-cost to remain accessible for most organizations. The beds and collapsible partitions can be nested and stacked to save space, and then, they can be quickly re-assembled and reused in case of future emergencies.

To date, we’ve shipped thousands of our emergency hospital beds to medical facilities across North America. We are also continually processing custom wall divider orders to serve other locations in the United States and overseas.

“Not only are we grateful to have items as useful as this as we plan for future surges in patients, but we are also so proud that it was created and manufactured in our very own town,” says Dr. Joshua Pogorelec, General Surgeon and Surgical Services Medical Director at Aspirus Divine Savior in Portage, WI, home to the TriEnda and Penda headquarters.

When nearly 150 beds arrived at Home Base Veteran and Family Care in Massachusetts, Senior Director of Development Dan Arkins said, “[I] Can’t believe how easy they were to assemble. Feedback from the clinical staff has been very positive. You guys have been great to work with.”

If you’re looking for affordable, durable solutions to protect the health and safety of patients, customers, and employees, choose TriEnda. High-quality, low-cost solutions like Emergency & Disaster Relief Beds and Custom Wall Partitions are in-stock and ready for immediate shipping. Contact our sales team online or call 800.356.8150 today to learn how we can support disaster relief efforts at your organization.

We’re Making Emergency Hospital Beds To Aid COVID-19 Efforts

hospital bed

We’ve joined forces to respond immediately to the global health crisis with a newly developed product offering: a low-cost and easily assembled Emergency & Disaster Relief Bed. These beds that can be used by healthcare facilities across the United States and the world, and we are on track to begin production in the coming days.

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Material Handling Solutions for Retail and Government

worker moving carts with products on them

When it comes to material handling solutions for retail and government, we understand the importance of providing cost-effective options that will meet your specifications, timeline, and expectations. Read on to learn more about these material handling solutions for retail and government.

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