Boxmaster Unpacked

Boxmaster Unpacked
Business is always evolving regardless of the market or the industry. Remain static and
you risk falling behind while others progress. This holds true for the packaging industry where
Boxmaster has been servicing the Vancouver Lower Mainland since 1981. You don’t continue in
operation for over thirty years without changing with the times and innovating along the way. It
is on the back of these principles that continues to see Boxmaster at the forefront of the box
manufacturing industry, continuing to find ways to set the benchmark for in quality and service.
The corrugate industry is competitive and the importance of quality, service and
presentation are more important than ever. A box is not just a product with six sides, eight
corners that comes in brown or white. It is both integral in the shipping process and often a
symbol of the company it represents, especially for the customer whose box bares their brand.
The minds at Boxmaster recognize this and spent the recent years pushing towards new heights
in providing a level of quality not seen before in the Lower Mainland market.
In 2014 the company relocated to a new facility and moved its operations to Annacis
Island in Delta, B.C. This move would be the catalyst in helping Boxmaster attain its premier
goal of becoming the first box manufacturer in Western Canada to receive its International
Featured Standards certification. (IFS Pac Secure) This certification encompasses internationally
accepted audit standards and Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) benchmarking, focuses on a
Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP)-based program, allowing Boxmaster to
certify that materials used in the packaging process are safe for the food industry. This drive
towards quality assurance, overseen by a management team, has allowed Boxmaster to
provide its customers with a standard unseen in the market before. Their customers are
relishing in the opportunity to purchase packaging that they can provide to consumers knowing
it came from a facility that is free of allergens and contaminants. Boxmaster has not stopped
there however, as all their orders are printed with a hidden tracking code in food safe ink, that
allows them full accountability and traceability for the entirety of the product they
Innovation is not stumbled upon, you have to be creative and work hard towards
reaching new depths and Boxmaster has undertaken the role of doing just that. The job
continues as they continue to find new avenues to provide the best experience and product to
their customers, but they now do this as the optimal source for food safe packaging.
Focus on success
We looked at the
market and saw
there was a need
for better food
safety standards
in packaging
Greg Reid
General Manager
of Boxmaster
Western Canada’s only food safe certified corrugated manufacturer. Quality Assurance Technician - Raluca Bumbac, Operations Manager Chris Hanna, General Manager - Greg Reid.
The total package
hen Greg Reid, general
manager of Boxmaster
– one of the longest-established manufacturers of corrugated
packaging in B.C. – noticed leading
retailers like Costco and Walmart
were demanding higher levels of
food safety from the brands that
fill their shelves, he decided to get
ahead of the curve.
“We looked at the market and saw
there was a need for better food
safety standards in packaging,” said
Reid from his office on Annacis Island in Delta. “We wanted to get on
the front end of that and be the first
to do it.”
Historically, he says, people
have been concerned with safety
issues around how and where food
is made. Now, more and more
industry folks – not to mention
consumers – are waking up to the
fact that food safety extends to the
packaging that edibles come in –
and, ultimately, come into contact
In May 2013, Reid and his staff
began to prepare for an extensive
audit that, once cleared, would
make their company the first box
manufacturer in Western Canada
to hold International Featured
Standards (IFS) PACsecure certification – a distinction that would
allow Boxmaster to guarantee its
packaging materials as safe for use
by the food industry.
“It was a year in the making,” Reid
said of the activities leading up to
the audit, which included an overhaul of manufacturing practices
to comply with food safety standards and reduce the potential for
“A big step was to design and move
into our new building, which is
equivalent to a food-safe facility.
Having certain features, like segregated washrooms and lunchrooms
so there’s no opportunity for crosscontamination, was key to the program” he explained.
“Another major element was to
hire a full-time quality assurance
manager, whose job it is to ensure
that we are always complying with
and meeting stringent food safety
measures, in all areas.”
From shipping and receiving to
manufacturing, sanitization procedures, preventative maintenance
of equipment and staff training,
Boxmaster covered all the bases –
and, according to Reid, was able to
fine-tune and better its business in
a variety of ways as a result. In June
2014, the hard work finally paid off –
in a big way.
“We passed [the audit] on the
very first try with 96.1 per cent,
which is the highest level awarded”
he said. “It’s been amazing in that
it’s actually helped us become a
better company, thanks to all of
the training and procedures we
had to implement. What we do
now and how we do it rolls into our
quality program as well; it’s been
Boxmaster’s customers couldn’t
be happier, either.
“It definitely separates us from
the competition,” Reid said.
“We’ve had several people in for
tours since June and, when they
see our employees wearing hairnets, sanitizing their hands and
not bringing any food or allergens
onto the floor, they’re impressed.
It allows them to go back to the
retailers and show them that,
from how they make their product to what they package it in,
they’re truly concerned with food
safety.” •
IFS PACSecure is an internationally recognized food safety
(HACCP-based) and quality standard.
The standard is FFSI (Global Food Safety Initiative) benchmarked
to ensure the safety and quality of packaging materials for the food industry.
The certification allows us to declare our manufacturing process,
along with our boxes, as being food safe.
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