Doing the Next Right Thing with Paperboard Packaging

Colbert Packaging operations during the pandemic—the same, but different.

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Adopting CDC’s perpetual cleaning and maintenance guidelines calls for all hands on deck. Lackner pitches in on “Gray Lighting.”
Adopting CDC’s perpetual cleaning and maintenance guidelines calls for all hands on deck. Lackner pitches in on “Gray Lighting.”

When the leadership team from Colbert Packaging Corporation, a provider of paperboard packaging solutions, met to formalize its 2020 operating plan, little did they know how drastically the plan would change in a matter of weeks. Thanks to an experienced, dedicated workforce, the operations team mobilized for rapid response to demand for COVID-19 test kits and other pandemic-related products in need of secondary packaging.

“No one anticipated the magnitude of this pandemic,” reflects Colbert President & COO John Lackner, “but we knew the right thing to do was take action and do our part to keep employees safe and adhere to strict CDC safety guidelines.” Lackner attributes Colbert’s ability to supply the urgently needed pharmaceutical packaging orders to an up-to-date business continuity plan (BCP), as well as five key factors:

  1. A willing and able workforce
  2. The right printing and finishing equipment
  3. Technology for quality assurance
  4. Inventory availability and trusted supply chain
  5. Supportive customer base

A willing and able workforce

Colbert is a 60-year-old family-owned business with more than 300 employees, many of whom have been with the company for decades. As a secondary packaging producer for pharmaceutical and food-safe products, it was deemed an essential business during this pandemic. Upon BCP activation, Colbert’s IT team facilitated and secured home-based operations for its office staff, while production scheduling enacted drastic course corrections in each of its three facilities. Employees adapted to newly required safety practices and worked diligently to balance capacity with customer demand. 

The right printing and finishing equipment

In keeping with its model of Safe, Smart, and Sustainable paperboard packaging solutions for pharmaceutical, healthcare and consumer brands markets, Colbert Packaging was ready to respond. Recent investments in printing and finishing equipment provided the means to serve its customer base and meet the escalated demands of COVID-19 pharmaceutical packaging.

Technology for quality assurance

Even the most urgent demand for pharmaceutical packaging must comply with FDA requirements. No exceptions. Colbert Packaging supports its customers’ FDA requirements by maintaining cGMP standards for FDA-compliant quality management systems and operating procedures. Colbert’s GMI certification, combined with its 100% vision inspection technologies, ensure quality and accuracy in secondary packaging, saving time and materials while working to exceed customer expectations.

Inventory availability and trusted supply chain

A trusted supply chain is critical during challenging times like this. Careful inventory planning and warehousing and a reliable and flexible sourcing network position Colbert to maintain its production flow, from mission-critical raw materials to final delivery.

Supportive customer base

The customer remains central to Colbert’s focus. Unprecedented times call for open communications and voluntary agreement to work together for the common good of our communities. “Our customers have demonstrated the support and teamwork needed to see us through this extraordinary time,” says Lackner. “We’re grateful to be in a position to do the next right thing.” 

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