On The Mark: Amazon’s New Tamper Evident Carton Sealing Tape

I received a small parcel the other day, and was delighted to see Amazon’s new tamper evident carton sealing tape. But before you write me off as a weirdo, please understand that tamper evident tape is what I do for a living; so new products and packaging in general tend to get my attention.

This particular tape is a 2-3/4” wide reinforced water-activated paper tape. For carton sealing, this type of tape offers many advantages over the plastic carton sealing tapes. To learn more download our PDF on Water Activated Carton Security Tape Benefits.

Once the tape bonds to the carton, it simply can’t be peeled away or separated from the carton; so in a way it marries with the carton. The tape is reinforced with string, and is extremely strong; I’ve seen many instances over the years where over-packed cartons are easily sealed and hold strong with this type of tape. Some of the plastic tapes can pop up if the adhesive doesn’t fully bond.

The tape has a rich, classy look to it. The Amazon logo is reverse printed—so the “amazon” text is the same color as the brown carton, and everything around it is printed in black. And of course, the orange swoosh beneath the text adds a nice accent and some balance. So for a 2-color print job, the end result is effective in promoting their brand, while also adding a touch of class. More importantly though, the printing provides some enhanced tamper evidence: if the tape is cut and re-sealed over with clear tape, the logo would need to be lined up perfectly. Since the tape is a flat/matte paper, any clear poly tape affixed over top of it would be glaringly noticeable.

Why isn’t this style of tape more commonly used today? The primary reason is that a lot of companies prefer to utilize portable tape guns, and other equipment, which are suited for plastic carton tapes. The water-activated paper tapes, such as Amazon’s, require dry gummed tape machines that wet the back of the tape (this activates the adhesive), advances the tape out of the machine at a pre-determined length as it affixes to the carton, then cuts the tape. These tape machines are obviously not as portable as the handheld tape guns.

For years, I have been searching for a handheld water-activated tape gun. When I am able to find or develop one, this will open some doors in making water-activated tapes a more viable option for companies who ship a lot of cartons.