Inside Logistics

Cascades joins Amazon packaging certification network

As a member of the Amazon Packaging Support and Supplier (APASS) network Cascades can certify Amazon vendors' packaging


June 7, 2019
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KINGSEY FALLS, QC – Cascades is now an official member of the Amazon Packaging Support and Supplier (APASS) network.

“As a member of the APASS network, Cascades will be able to help its customers in three ways: by making sure that their products are well protected, by offering our customers sustainable solutions that also provide the best customer experience possible, and by enabling our vendor and manufacturer partners to align themselves with Amazon’s requirements,” said Charles Malo, president and COO of Cascades Containerboard Packaging.

Cascades’s R&D Centre, the largest private Canadian research centre in the industry, has implemented an internal quality system based on International Safe Transit Association (ISTA), the Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry (TAPPI) and ASTM (formerly the American Society for Testing and Materials) directives to ensure that the company provides consistent service quality. Cascades is therefore able to conduct baseline testing on boxes and components (liner and medium), as well as competitive analysis, root cause analysis and qualification testing of individual packages or pallets. The R&D Centre provides ISTA 6-Amazon.com testing (which challenges packaging’s ability to withstand transport hazards)  to help customers meet Amazon’s strict packaging requirements.

“E-commerce represented 14.3 percent of total retail sales in 2018,i in the US, and Amazon is an important part of this. Our goal at Cascades is to partner with our customers as they grow their e-commerce business, and by joining the APASS network, we can offer our clients the essential services they need to successfully certify their packaging with Amazon,” said Danick Lavoie, vice-president, operations, packaging at Cascades Containerboard Packaging.

“With more than 50 years of experience and an expert team of over 60 structural designers and packaging engineers, Cascades can provide our customers with a full range of structural design and prototyping expertise. Our services are tailored to meet and exceed the e-commerce packaging and supply chain requirements of all our customers.”

APASS is a program designed by Amazon to support vendors, sellers, and manufacturers in certifying their products as Prep-Free Packaging (PFP), Ships-in-Own Container (SIOC) and Frustration-Free Packaging (FFP). By doing so, they’ll be the right size, protected against damage, ready-to-ship without the need for additional packaging, and ideally easy to open and recyclable.

Amazon provides a list of suppliers that can help test, design, and supply packaging in line with Amazon’s packaging certification rules. One of these rules is the  FFP Vendor Incentive Program for all vendors. By August 1, 2019, all items larger than 18″ x 14″ x 8″ or greater than 20 lb and sold through Amazon must be designed and certified as ready-to-ship under their FFP program.

To encourage early adoption of this program, Amazon is offering a one-time early adopter credit of $1 per unit to vendors that certify their items before August 1, 2019 and will issue a chargeback of $1.99 per unit beginning on that date. Cascades is part of the network that can certify the packaging.