Charpak News Page

Award-winning designers join the Charpak team

Award-winning product designer Max Cubitt has an impressive MSC in Integrated Product Design from the University of Brunel.  Max has also been recognised by Marks & Spencer, Birds Eye and BT winning 3 design awards for his product innovation.  Max brings 6 years' product design experience from the events and team building industry' and constantly challenges his creative and technical boundaries.  Max's nirvana design moments are when he creates a truly interactive experience between the consumer and product.  Max designs packaging solutions for commercial market sectors using his technical 2D and 3D design skills in KeyShot, Solidworks, and CREO while incorporating physical prototyping.

James Martin brings energy and enthusiasm to the Technical Design team as our Junior Designer.  Graduating from Loughborough University with a BA in Industrial Design James is happiest when designing extremely technical and aesthetically stunning designs, new concepts and blue-sky ideas.  James likes to challenge the boundaries of engineering capabilities whilst at the same time ensuring every design is manufacturable.  James is happiest when he sees his conceptual packaging designs on sale in national retail for recognisable international and UK brands. Outside work James is an active sportsman, an avid sketcher and a keen freelance graphic designer.

Charpak expands production capacity further

Illig RD53In support of Charpak's growth a new Illig RD53d arrives in September 2017.  This additional investment augments Charpak's ability to provide its client industry-leading turnaround times from initial concept designs, prototypes, tooling and to production - within 29 days.

Charpak's thermoforming capabilities to produce increasingly complex and innovative rigid plastic packaging are sector leading.  Technical Director, Gary Smith is delighted with this new investment saying "A key differentiator for Charpak is that we meet clients' requirements of premium quality and replicable formings for short cycle NPD trials, line production trials, and consumer testing.  This investment re-inforces our commitment where we provide the extra level of service to our clients."


ChaKeifel KMD78rpak invests in two state-of-the-art Kiefel machines

As part of Charpak's expansion plans the company has invested in 2 further Kiefel KMD78 4-station machines.  From early June 2017 the company now produces up to an additional 100,000 units per day.  Managing director, Paul Smith confirms "These 2 purchases are part of our strategic plans to grow the business and increase our capacity re-affirming our position as the most innovative and responsive UK producer of bespoke packaging."

He adds "We know our clients appreciate Charpak's flexibility and agility to respond quickly to their packaging challenges; so adding an additional 100,000 units per day means we continue to strengthen our industry-leading service delivery claim."

Charpak will receive delivery of a second Kiefel KMD78 machine in September 2017.  This will add up to an additional 200,000 units per day.


The Grocer 2016-2017

Charpak, Innovative Packaging That Sells Your Product


Grocer Christmas Advert


 Groser Luxury Advert


Charpak's innovative design team challenge the mould

Food Utopia Banner

Happy Birthday Cubes

Charpak Ltd, working with Food Utopia Avana, designed and produced the packaging for their exciting new product launched into Sainsbury’s. Food Utopia Avana developed their Happy Birthday Cake Cubes, which are individual Cakes in a carton board wrap with a tear strip for ease of eating.
Charpak worked with the NPD team at Food Utopia to develop packaging that was going to show off the product to its best. Traditionally these would have gone in a Carton Board Box with window, however with Charpak’s clear packaging the product is highly visible. The added benefit with Charpak’s design is that the Cakes have an additional two days shelf life against a standard box. Jane Berry Commercial Director of Food Utopia said “Charpak have supported us throughout this project, we are delighted with their design. The Cake Cubes are a fantastic product and are one of many innovative ideas we are bringing to the market. Charpak are consistently coming up with new and better ways to show off our product”

Charpak expands again 
June 2015

New Expansion Area 1Charpak Ltd has just opened a new brand new purpose built 13,000sq. ft. extension to its existing facility in Huntingdon. This is designed to expand the storage area and add to the production space for a further two vacuum forming machines. This is in addition to the two machines purchased during 2014. Managing Director Paul Smith stated “We always had plans to better utilise the old offices and car park on the land we bought when we moved up to Huntingdon.

The new building will allow Charpak Ltd to continue the stellar growth it has achieved over the last five years. Growth has been driven by creating innovative designs for the Food, Confectionery, Drink, Personal Care and Medical markets.




Charpak Ltd has ambitious plans to further extend its reach into other markets. Charpak’s differentiator has always been its design capability and the speed of response to the rapidly evolving demands of FMCG. With its market leading turn-around time of 29 Days from initial brief to product arriving at the customers’ door, Charpak leads the way in delivering on its promise. Paul Smith says “with the consolidation going on in our industry the fewer larger players cannot respond the way we can, they need ever larger minimum runs to make their business model work, which means there is so little imagination or innovation out there. Charpak works with its customers and can offer better response times for innovation in design, samples, tooling and delivery. This can be vital when they have customers demanding quick turn around. With our turnaround time this means we can create seasonal differential and allow our customers to offer their customers a point of difference. This leads to more sales for our customers. In our experience Charpak’s packaging helps sell their product”

 New Area 2     New Area 3     New Area 4


Charpak welcomes new team members

Charpak are delighted to announce that it has two new additions to its Sales Team. Both these appointments are intended to help the company reach its ambitious sales targets over the next few years.

New Sales Team Member Rachael Cook

Rachael Cook joined us in 2014;

Rachael worked in the charity event sector prior to joining the company as a Business Development Manager.  She has settled into her role very quickly and her dynamism has led her to be hugely successful in a short space of time. In addition she has recently taken responsibility for the Automotive sector for Charpak, demonstrating her abilities in a market where networking is a vital skill to have. She continues to help drive the business forward using her creative abilities to great effect creating exciting innovative packaging across all sectors that the company works in.

New Sales Team Member Sophie Bridges

Sophie Bridges has recently joined us as a Business Development Executive. She previously worked in sales in the luxury gifting sector and had great success in selling high-end products.
She will work across all market sectors with special responsibility for the Luxury Sector utilising her skills in selling into this competitive market. Sophie is currently learning how Charpak works during her induction period and is already excited about the difference she can make to the future success of Charpak. Helping to create innovative packaging that shows off our customers’ products.

Charpak invests in the future

August 2014

Charpak has invested significant sums in new machinery during 2014. This is in addition to the major investment in 2013.

New Kiefel MachineIn June Charpak took delivery of its latest Kiefel machine to compliment the KMD60 and KMV75 already in place. Paul Smith Managing Director says “As we have grown and increasingly won new business the Kiefel KMD64 fits the bill to drive the business forward.” The increased efficiencies from the Kiefel KMD64 has helped Charpak to win major new accounts including ichiban UK for Tesco Sushi packaging. In addition Charpak have just collaborated with another of its major customers to help automate its production lines. The Kiefel machines and Charpak’s innovative designs have allowed the customer to achieve significant throughput improvements on their lines.

New Illig MachineIn a further sign of the growth shown during 2013/14 Charpak also took delivery of a new Illig machine in July, taking their investment to over £600k for the year to date. Charpak decided to invest in an Illig RV53D. Paul Smith, MD said “historically we have always used Illigs as they suit our business needs and the addition of the RV53D will allow us to move the business forward by utilising the extra capabilities of the machine.” The Illig machine is in addition to the mix of Illigs currently onsite which include RDKP pressure formers. Paul Smith says “The mix of machines we have now allow Charpak to plan for the future knowing that in conjunction with our design capabilities we will continue to offer the most innovative products that are on the market today.”


Charpak plans expansion for Huntingdon HQ

In addition to Charpak’s investment in new machinery for 2014 it has also announced exciting plans for a major building extension to provide an expansion to its warehousing space as well as expanding its production area.

Paul Smith MD says “With the consistent growth we have shown over the past  five years we are outgrowing the space we have available. I am pleased that we are able to expand on our current site by demolishing some old offices and a small warehouse and rebuild a purpose designed facility which will also cover some redundant car-parking space.” The building is due to open in early 2015. Smith said “The new building will allow us to continue developing major new accounts and the extra space means we can stay in our Huntingdon base and achieve our growth plans in line with our five year plan.”

Charpak now employs over 100 local people, it has ambitious plans for growth and expects to expand its workforce over the next five years.


Twist Lock Packaging Innovation


Innovative Packaging


 Halloween Pack



Packaging Surgery at easyFairs

Charpak's innovative design team lead packaging NPD

Twist-Loc Piggy Cake

Charpak have released their latest patented packaging innovation, Twist-Loc.

Twist-Loc is a unique combination of an rPET Dome with a specially designed and cut Cakeboard that locks in to the dome. This allows the customer to achieve packaging reduction yet still showing off the product in all its glory. With the addition of a Watchstrap style band to allow branding the necessity for tamper evidence is also reduced. Charpak were the first to market with the lid and base Domes for premium cakes and this design takes it one step further without affecting the shelf life of the standard packaging.

Twist-Loc moves the premium cake market into a whole new area. Designers are already working on further developments into other market sectors.

Twist-Loc Pack

25% planned growth, assisted by the Kiefel KMD60

New Kiefel KMD60 Vac Forming MAchine

As part of our planned growth in 2012 / 13 we have just taken delivery of a new KMD60 Kiefel machine to add to the list of thermoforming machines we already have on site.

This will increase our capacity to ensure our lead-times remain under 2 weeks. This machine allows us to look at new markets and product design as our current machinery is slightly restrictive in size of forming and depth of mould

Considering the machine was only delivered at the end of October the machine has been very busy over the last few weeks and we are extremely pleased with the results.

Charpak's packaging design wins awards and helps save lives

Colalife AidPod

 This innovative packaging solution called the “Colalife AidPod” was designed and developed by Charpak Ltd in conjunction with Packaging Innovation Group, the London product design consultants.

Colalife is an independent charity working in developing countries to open up Coca-Cola’s distribution channels to carry simple medicines to save children’s lives. A key part of this concept is the AidPod which is a wedge shaped container designed to fit into the "free space" between the bottles of Coca-Cola crates used in Zambia. The pack makes use of unused space to house oral rehydration salts and zinc supplements. It contains anti diarrhoea tablets plus medical supplies that keep young children and infants alive.

The container is also used in conjunction with a tablet as a water purification device when left in the sun for six hours.

The lid and base pack is made in clear rPET plastic.

Addendum 28/3/2013

Designs of the Year 2013

ColaLife Design Awards

The Designs of the Year 2013 exhibition opened on the 20th March and ColaLife are one of the Nominees. The winner will be announced on the 17th April so good luck to them.

Click the image to see the highlights of the design awards opening.

The 'Udderly' Brilliant Cow Cup 

Haberman Products Cow CupHaberman Products Inventing Better Ways is partnering Charpak Ltd Innovative Designs for Inspiring Packaging.

Innovative packaging design solutions provided by Charpak Ltd were inspired by Haberman Products for the launch of their next generation of baby and infant drinking products.

From the outset, packaging for the new Haberman Products range was conceived to negate any cross contamination of materials and to ensure that all the packaging parts were totally recyclable.

An innovative design detail from Charpak that mechanically locks the header card to the pack - without glue or application of labels – helped Haberman Products to realise their vision without compromise.

The pack comprising a hinged plastic clamshell that hugs the product and an FSC certified unbleached header card is easy to pack and can be presented at point of sale on either a euro slot or self standing on shelf.

Clear rPET plastic was chosen to showcase their products and to aid consumer recycling via widely available rPET bottle recovery infrastructures across all their geographical markets.

Jubilee Celebrations

Charpak were delighted to sponsor our Maintenance Supervisor Mick Clarke and his Dragon boat team 'Cool Runnings" as they took part in the foltilla on the River Thames in celebrations of the Queens Diamond Jubille on Sunday 3rd June 2012.

In the picture going from right to left are David Smith (Chairman), Mick Clarke (Holding Cheque) and Technical Director Gary Smith.


 Mick and his Dragon Boat Team felt this was a once in a life time opportunity and although it was a very wet and tiring day they all enjoyed themselves and felt proud and honoured to have been part of this Royal Experience.

The happiest baking day of your lives!

Many of us dream of the expensive, sophisticated cake design but cannot afford it. However, this packaging solution makes available the best wedding cake product direct to the store, straight from the baker! Take a close look at the design that allows elaborate wedding cakes to be transported direct from the bakery to the final customer safely and without the need to assemble the tiers at the customer's own risk, What a relief!

 Numerous technical innovations within the three piece system, including locking tabs for the cake boards, ensure security in transit. The system has also been designed as a single SKU that will enable numerous shapes and sizes of final products to be shipped.


These cakes are only available through M&S wedding service at a price that reflects their excellent design and baking quality.

Charpak invests in staff development:  Training News

11 Setters have now started the NVQ Level 2 Polymer Processing – Thermoforming course which will enhance there skills in the process of machine setting, this in turn will enable the company to become a lot more efficient.

We held an inaugural training session in Level 1 Food Safety Training for 16 selected staff that proved to be very successful, this will now be rolled out to the rest of the company.

Congratulations go out to our First Aiders who all completed the First Aid at Work Training course with flying colours.

We also ran a Forklift Truck Refresher Training course this year as well as having 5 employees take the Forklift Truck Novice Training course.

David Hill, our Sales Administrator has just completed a refresher course in ‘Customer Relations’ to ensure we continue to support our customers at the highest level possible. Our aim as a supplier is to make your life easier as a customer!


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11 Setters have now started the NVQ Level 2 Polymer Processing – Thermoforming course which will enhance there skills in the process of machine setting, this in turn will enable the company to become a lot more efficient.

We held an inaugural training session in Level 1 Food Safety Training for 16 selected staff that proved to be very successful, this will now be rolled out to the rest of the company during 2011.

Congratulations go out to our First Aiders who all completed the First Aid at Work Training course with flying colours.

We also ran a Forklift Truck Refresher Training course this year as well as having 5 employees take the Forklift Truck Novice Training course.

David Hill, our Sales Administrator has just completed a refresher course in ‘Customer Relations’ to ensure we continue to support our customers at the highest level possible. Our aim as a supplier is to make your life easier as a customer!