Loose fill materials are used to fill empty spaces in packages that contain lightweight, non-fragile items. An example of loose fill material is Expanded Polystyrene Peanuts.
Use enough loose fill peanuts to ensure that the contents cannot move when you shake the box. It is recommended that the box be overfilled slightly to account for the settling that will occur during shipping. It is also recommended that flat pieces of corrugated fiberboard be used between contents and peanuts to help prevent migration through the peanuts.
Additional Recommendations: For fragile items, wrap each item separately with multiple layers of sheeting (small or large cell bubble or foam sheeting) and place in the recommended shipping container. Fragile items need suitable separation from each other, and from the corners, sides, top, and bottom of the box. Each item should be surrounded by at least two inches (5.08 cm) of material and placed a minimum of two inches (5.08 cm) away from the box walls. This prevents product-against-product damage and protects the contents from shock and vibration, which can pass from the outside of the box to the contents.
Loose fill materials are not recommended for use with flat, narrow, or dense products that may migrate or shift within the package. Because loose fill materials may also shift or settle during the distribution cycle, any shifting of the product within the package could expose it to a higher probability of damage.
Loose fill materials like Expanded Polystyrene Peanuts cause static electricity and may damage electronic items. Anti-static peanuts should be used for electronic items. Use plastic bags, bubble sheeting, or other items to wrap the item so peanuts will not work themselves into areas that may cause harm to your merchandise.
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