Packaging and Labeling Specification PDF

Packaging and Labeling Specification Document # 500-00150

Symbotic LLC makes no representations or warranties with respect to the contents hereof. In addition, information contained herein is subject to change without notice. Every precaution has been taken in preparation of this manual. Nevertheless, Symbotic LLC assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions or any damages resulting from the use of the information contained in this publication.


Symbotic and the Symbotic “S” logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Symbotic LLC. All other trademarks belong to their respective owners.

Table of Contents

  1. Purpose
  2. Scope
  3. Responsibilities
  4. Reference Documents
  5. Definitions
  6. Supplier Responsibility
  7. Supplier Compliance
  8. Specific Packaging Requirements
  9. Sensitive Items
  10. Material Identification and Labeling
  11. Wood Crating
  12. Crate and Pallet banding
  13. Dangerous Goods Cargo

Appendix I:  Size & Weight Limitations

Appendix II: Shock-watch Guide and Placement

1.  Purpose

This document lists specific requirements for packaging parts or assemblies for Symbotic LLC.

2.  Scope

This document provides minimum packaging requirements for shipments to Symbotic, Symbotic customer sites, and interplant material and product shipments.

3.  Responsibilities

Suppliers are responsible to adhering to all requirements for shipments to Symbotic LLC.

Product Hardware Engineering is responsible for providing released product packaging for items to be shipped to customer site. Responsibility includes validation of packaging compliance and protection, recording validation results in Lifecycle maangement System (PLM), and Maintaining packaging design documentation.

Production and Shipping personnel are responsible for insuring shipments meet these requirements.

4.  Reference Documents

5.  Definitions

  • Vibration: Vibration is the one hazardous element that will occur during every distribution cycle. It is also the one element that is most difficult to understand without performing vibration testing. The packaging materials that are chosen for a product should ideally dampen the forces frequencies seen in the distribution cycle or match the natural frequencies the product may
  • Shock Loads or Drops: Drops are a common hazardous element during the distribution cycle. A packaged product will see drop heights that correlate to the size and weight of the container. The smaller package will typically be subject to higher drops. The following table shows a packaged product weight with a corresponding maximum drop height that may occur during the distribution cycle. The product should be adequately cushioned to prevent damage from occurring at the drop height associated with the packaged product weight.
0 TO 10 42
11 TO 50 36
51 TO 100 24
101 TO 250 18
251 + 12
  • Compression: There are two different types of compression: static compression and dynamic compression. Static compression comes from warehouse storage, while dynamic compression is due to compressive forces incurred during transportation and material
  • Impacts: Impacts can be regarded as horizontal shocks. The packaging should be designed to withstand impacts normally incident to the distribution environment. Special attention should be placed on packages that are being shipped by small parcel shippers. The small parcel shipping environments are extremely hazardous during the sorting process.

6.  Supplier Responsibility

  • The Supplier must read all applicable referenced documents in full prior to defining their packaging and must ensure full compliance to
  • The Supplier must enforce and ensure compliance to the applicable requirements in this document.
  • The Supplier must determine the most economical method of packaging, consistent with the applicable
  • The Supplier must include packaging costs in all part quotations provided to Symbotic LLC prior to the first
  • Packaging not meeting the requirements in the applicable referenced documents must be approved by Symbotic LLC prior to the first shipment. Reference 270-00004 supplier deviation and change request
  • Supplier packaging must comply with all local, federal and international laws and regulations, including export rules and laws and regulations pertaining to hazardous materials and dangerous goods.
  • Supplier packaging must provide safe, damage-free product delivery to or on behalf Symbotic LLC to its point of use or consumption under normal handling and transportation
  • If Supplier requirements stated within this or any other documents are felt to be insufficient, the Supplier is obligated to take every measure to enhance their packaging to ensure damage-free product delivery.
  • If the Supplier does not have package design expertise in-house, then that service, if required, should be contracted out to a company that specializes in package design. Symbotic LLC is not responsible for designing Supplier packaging.

7.  Supplier Compliance

Supplier compliance to the applicable documents referenced herein is crucial and will be enforced as a condition of purchase. To ensure conformance, all Supplier packaging is subject to inspection.

Symbotic LLC reserves the right to:

  • Reject any shipment that is not in compliance with these
  • Charge the Supplier for any costs incurred from damage product due to non-compliance to requirements, the cost to return damaged goods or re-packaging of
  • Diminish or remove business from the Supplier for non-compliance.
  • Remove from the list of Approved Suppliers any Supplier that, after notice, repeatedly fails to comply with
  • Charge the Supplier for any fines, penalties, redelivery expense, marking duties, liquidated damages or other related marking expenses incurred for non-compliance.

8.  Specific Packaging Requirements

  • Packaging Specifications: Packaging shall comply with standard industry packaging standards as appropriate for the type of package. For example;
    • ISTA 1A: Packaged-Products weighing 150 lb. (68 kg) or Less
    • ISTA 1B: Packaged-Products weighing Over 150 lb. (68 kg)
    • National Motor Freight Classification (NMFC) Item 222 defines requirements Corrugated fiberboard boxes
  • Box makers’ certificates (BMC) are typically found on the bottom flaps. The BMC states the maximum size (length + width + height) and the maximum weight the box can hold based on the material used to construct it. These size and weight limits have long been the minimum requirements cited by the The BMCs indicate the maximum size and the maximum weight allowed. Exceeding these limits could result in a damage claim being denied

  • National Motor Freight Classification (NMFC) Item 680 addresses requirements for common carrier motor freight shipment.
  • Packaging shall ensure the safe delivery of product, including protection for moisture, dirt/dust, and electrostatic discharge (ESD).
  • Palletized product: Preferred standard pallet
  • GMA 48X40, Stringer-class, Partial 4-way, Double face, non-reversible. Minimum opening height of 3.5 inches to allow for hand pallet trucks.
  • Or GMA 48X40, Block-class, 4-way, Double face, non-reversible. Minimum opening height of 3.5 inches to allow for hand pallet
  • Acceptable alternate: Asia and Europe standard size 1000 by 1200
    • Maximum height of pallet load is 45 inches for double stacking. Stacking heights should be stated. Where applicable, A NO STACKING requirement must be clearly
  • Palletized loads over 1500 lbs. must be labeled. Pallet or skid shall not exceed 4000 lbs.
  • Wood Packaging Material (WPM) such as pallets and crates used in import or export must be ISPM-15 compliant, heat treat method
  • All wood packaging material entering or transiting the United States must be heat-treated or fumigated and be marked with an approved logo certifying that it has been appropriately treated. Shipments containing noncompliant wood packaging material will not be allowed to enter the United
  • Items that do not fit a standard size pallet shall have adequate protection of overhanging items or special pallet construction.
  • Contact Buyer for approval of packaging outside of these requirements or to arrange the use of reusable containers.
    • It is the suppliers / shippers / packagers responsibility to package and load parts in such a manner as to ensure damage free delivery of both the container and the
    • All packaging material shall allow for easy segregation into appropriate waste recycling systems. All packaging materials shall have no sign of
  • All parts shall be free of any visible contaminates including, but not limited to: dust, corrosion, shavings, oils or contaminants prior to packaging. It is essential that cleanliness levels, attained during manufacturing, are not degraded by the packaging materials used or the packaging
  • All parts must be packaged to prevent shifting or rubbing of contents and when necessary, separated to prevent
  • Voids should be filled as required. Packaging should not be filled to the extent that they bulge. Excess pressure exerted on the packaging material can cause damage to the packaged product(s).
  • Packaging “Peanuts / Popcorn” is prohibited.
  • Protect all bagged items from punctures, abrasions, and protrusions to prevent contamination of parts during
  • Use proper labeling to mark packages such as; “FRAGILE”, HANDLE WITH CARE”, “THIS END UP”, “DO NOT STACK” as
  • Packaging closure shall permit access to the contents for inspection purposes without destroying the containers usefulness. (i.e. access to the crate needs to be able to be made without destroying or degrading the quality of the crate in anyway. Use of nails or staples is )
  • Use of staples is prohibited as a method of closure of bags. Bags will be taped or heat sealed. Metal bags will be heat sealed
  • All unprotected studs must be capped and all sharp edges must be protected to prevent damage to personnel, parts, or
  • All packaging materials must be compatible with the parts contained within the packaging. Packaging must not contribute to part, produce corrosion/oxidation, or particle
  • Parts should be packaged consistently from shipment to
  • No item or items should go beyond the outermost layer of
  • No item or items shall go beyond the pallet
  • Verify that all parts are completely dry before
  • Painted, plated or finished surfaces must be protected to prevent abrasions, nicks, scratches or dents.
  • Sharp protrusions must be covered to prevent injury to personnel, damage to product and puncturing of the packaging

9.  Sensitive Items

  • Electrostatic discharge (ESD): ESD sensitive items have become a significant concern for most electronics companies. Related hazards include Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) and Radio Frequency Interference (RFI). When items requiring packaging are susceptible to ESD, EMI & RFI damage it is up to the shipper who is familiar with their product to determine the type of handling/packaging required to prevent damage. The packager must also prevent damage from other hazards normally found in the distribution cycle (i.e. shock, vibration, compression, )

All items susceptible to ESD, EMI & RFI damage will need to be bagged into an appropriate material and boxed with ESD shielding protection as appropriate. Packaged ESD sensitive devices are to be identified with ESD label, or similar, by sealing bags with label and marking ESD containers.

There are three types of materials available to prevent damage. These materials are EMI/static shielding, static dissipate, and static shielding. (MIL-B-81705 types I, II, III).


Type I

Water vapor proof, electrostatic protective, electrostatic and electromagnetic shielding. Preferred
Type II Transparent, waterproof, electrostatic protective, static dissipative. Recommended
Type III Transparent, waterproof, electrostatic protective, electrostatic shielding. Minimal requirement, not recommended


  • Environmentally Sensitive Parts: Where applicable, the packaging shall protect components or products from degradation caused by environmental factors, such as humidity, reactive gases and radiation. Humidity is one of the most important environmental factors, and relevant to a wide range of product. Components/Products are degraded due to absorption of water molecules or corroded by water. The corrosion of metals begins after humidity reaches a specific

Reactive gases such as oxygen or sulfur containing properties can react with surfaces of components/products resulting in discolored or tarnished appearance. It is necessary to either eliminate or reduce the number of molecules in packaging.

There are three methods available to prevent degradation: the use of desiccant, the use of vapor corrosion inhibitors and non-reactive gas purge. To avoid potential micro-contamination the use of desiccants and vapor corrosion inhibitors is limited to certain types of components/products. Degradation of polymeric materials can occur due to the breakdown of long carbon chains by ultra violet light form sunlight or man- made light sources.

  • Desiccants: Desiccants are typically the primary material used to reduce moisture levels in packaging by absorbing water/moisture from the environment. Desiccant is used in combination with a water/moisture vapor proof rigid or flexible barrier to prevent water molecules form entering the package. The acceptable desiccant material is silica gel. Desiccants must be chosen for the specific application. For all applications at Symbotic the following chart is a guideline for determining the amount of desiccant required to sufficiently prevent oxidation inside a package using a water/moister vapor proof
1,429 90 1
2,857 180 2
4,286 270 3
5,714 360 4
7,143 450 5
14,286 900 10
28,571 1,800 20
57,143 3,600 40
114,286 7,200 80


  • Carton Sealing: The following are guidelines for the sealing of typical slotted container style boxes. The box sealing that is used must perform adequately during its intended distribution cycle. (See illustration )

  • Securing to Pallet: Securing boxes or corrugated shipping containers to the pallet shall be made using plastic strapping of sufficient strength to adequately secure the load to the pallet and prevent load shifting during the normal distribution cycle. The product shall be protected from damage by straps with the use of rigid plastic or paperboard edge protectors. The strapping shall be a minimum of 2 straps in one direction and when appropriate strapping shall be 2 additional straps in two or more directions to secure the load to the pallet. Use caution when strapping components to ensure no damage results from
  • Labeling: All shipments from Symbotic LLC Inc must be labeled (or stenciled) using international symbols in a way that clearly identifies handling requirements and restrictions. The labeling must be visible from all directions and applied using waterproof ink or exterior grade paint. Additional labeling may include Tip-n-Tell devices (see appendix I) placed on two adjacent sides and one enclosed in the

10.        Material Identification and Labeling

  • Minimum label size of 4 x 6 inches, White in color with black
  • Data to include; Part Number, Quantity, Purchase Order No., Supplier name, and manufacture date. Combined Human readable and bar code data is
  • Recommended label guidance; Labels are to adhere to the specifications as detailed and illustrated in the Automotive Industry Action Group’s publication “Shipping/Parts Identification Label Standard” (AIAG-B-10). See example
  • Labels shall be applied to two adjacent sides of the carton and/or
  • Each item is to be packaged in individual labeled cartons. Different part numbers should not be mixed in the same carton. Consolidated shipment of several part numbers is acceptable using consistent layout of cartons on the pallet. All carton labeling must be
  • Packaging list: The contents of each shipment must be contained on a packaging list attached to the exterior of the container. If multiple containers are used the shipment should be lot labeled, containers each marked “1 of #”, “2 of #”, “3 of #”, etc. and the packing list attached to the carton marked “1 of #”.
    • The packing slip or similar document shall include the original equipment manufacturers’ number or catalog number and the item number.
    • There should be one packing slip for each item delivered. One packing slip for each carton and quantity
    • One packing slip for the consolidated container or pallet listing all the item numbers, Purchase order numbers, and quantities within.


Font Type(s): Arial, Arial Bold (refer to illustration above)

Font Size: Scaled accordingly to match depicted layout & approved by Symbotic

  • Cleaning: All parts or assembles having a final integration or destination into a Cleanroom will be wiped with isopropyl alcohol using a non-partialulation
  • Handling: Once parts and assemblies have been cleaned they can only be handled with cleanroom approved gloves. Cleaned assemblies should be packaged in cleanroom approved packaging materiel immediately after part is
  • Gloves: Gloved hands that touch clean parts must not touch anything else. Immediately replace a glove which has touched an unclean surface i.e. hair, clothing, bench, floor, etc.

11.        Wood Crating

All wood packaging and crating material shall be made and marked in accordance with “International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures: Guidelines for Regulating Wood Packaging Material in International Trade (Publication 15)”. All lumber shall be sound, heat treated, bug free and bark free. Bark is strictly prohibited!

Knots are permitted provided they are sound and tight. Green or wet lumber is strictly prohibited! Workmanship shall be in accordance with these standards. Imperfections or omissions, which would impair the protection of the product, will not be accepted.

FAO Pub 15-Wood Packaging Regulation.pdf

Available at:

  • Crates are to be screwed together and to the skids on all sides using 5/16 x 2” and 5/16 x 3 1/2” zinc coated screws for easy removal. To prevent the destruction of crating material during un- packaging, the use of nails and staples is
  • Crates are to be banded using ¾ inch metal banding in a cross

12.        Crate and Pallet banding

  • Cargo 68 kilograms (150 pounds) and over

Any single piece of freight that is 68 kilograms (150 pounds) or over must be banded on all four sides to a skid with metal or unbreakable plastic banding to be accepted for carriage on the main deck of an aircraft. This requirement should be followed in case freight tendered to airlines is switched from passenger to all cargo aircraft. (See pictures below for examples of compliant banding).

**Note** Only skids that comply with the solid wood packaging requirements are to be used. Further explanation with example:

If shipping 10 cartons, each weighing 30 kg, shrink wrapped to a skid, technically this would not require banding as no single piece is over 68 kilograms. However, the freight will either need to be banded to be compliant with the 68 kilograms or over rule or you will have to tender it as 10 loose pieces weighing 30 kg each and label each individual piece.

Crated shipments are constructed on their own skids. No additional skidding is required, however if the crates are 68 kilograms or over the banding requirements still apply.

Oversized cargo is to be handled with common sense when determining if skidding and banding is required.

13.        Dangerous Goods Cargo

Supplier must contact Symbotic Logistics / Supply Chain to ensure all packaging, labeling, and other instructions are followed for safe transportation.

Appendix I:  Size & Weight Limitations

AI.1 The following chart is a guideline from NMFC rule 222 for determining the corrugated containers minimum material. Individual shipping requirements deemed appropriate by Symbotic LLC to ensure safe shipment of the product may very form this chart. The chart refers to size and weight to determine the container style required. The size is calculated by adding the length (L), width (W), and height (H) of the packaged product (Size in inches

= L” + W” + H”). The chart shows outer container minimum material requirements. The Product being shipped may require a stronger container than indicated to ensure that the product arrives damage-free at its destination point.

Weight 0-30 Pounds
0-50 in. 200#/32 ECT Single wall corrugated container.
51-75 in. 275#/44 ECT Single wall corrugated container.
76-90 in. 350#/51 ECT Double wall corrugated container. If length is greater than 60″ then use wood box or cleated plywood box.
91-105 in. 350#/51 ECT Double wall corrugated container. If length is greater than 50″ then use Wood Box or cleated plywood box. If length is greater than 90″ then use only cleated plywood box.
>105 in. Wood Box or cleated plywood box. If length is greater than 90″ then use cleated plywood box.
SIZE Weight 31-50 Pounds
0-50 in. 275#/44 ECT Single wall corrugated container.
51-75 in. 275#/44 ECT Single wall corrugated container.
76-90 in. 350#/51 ECT Double wall corrugated container. If length is greater than 60″ then use wood box or cleated plywood box.
91-105 in. 350#/51 ECT Double wall corrugated container. If length is greater than 40″ then use Wood Box or cleated plywood box. If length is greater than 90″ then use only cleated plywood box.
>105 in. Wood Box or cleated plywood box. If length is greater than 90″ then use cleated plywood box.
SIZE Weight 51-70 Pounds
0-50 in. 350#/51 ECT Double wall corrugated container.
51-75 in. 350#/51 ECT Double wall corrugated container. If length is greater than 40″ then use wood box or cleated plywood box.
76-90 in. 350#/51 ECT Double wall corrugated container. If length is greater than 40″ then use wood box or cleated plywood box.
91-105 in. 350#/51 ECT Double wall corrugated container. If length is greater than 34″ then use Wood Box or cleated plywood box. If length is greater than 90″ then use only cleated plywood box.
>105 in. Wood Box or cleated plywood box. If length is greater than 90″ then use plywood box.
SIZE Weight 71-120 Pounds
0-50 in. 350#/51 ECT Double wall corrugated container.
51-75 in. 350#/51 ECT Double wall corrugated container. If length is greater than 40″ then use wood box or cleated plywood box.
76-90 in. Wood box or cleated plywood box.
91-105 in. Wood box or cleated plywood box. If length is greater than 90″ then use only cleated plywood box.
>105 in. Cleated plywood box.
SIZE Weight 120-1000 Pounds
0-50 in. Wood box. If weight exceeds 400 lbs. then use only cleated plywood box.
51-75 in. Wood box. If weight exceeds 400 lbs. then use only cleated plywood box.
76-90 in. Cleated plywood box.
91-105 in. Cleated plywood box.
>105 in. Cleated plywood box.
SIZE Weight 1000 -> Pounds
If weight exceeds 1000lb use a load bearing base with a cleated plywood cap.


Appendix II: Shock-watch Guide and Placement













Cubic Feet = Height x Width x Depth

UNDER 100 LBS N/A 12-18″ 12-24″ 24-36″ 36″-OVER
OVER 100 LBS 6-12″ 8-16″ 12-18″ N/A N/A
Note: Packaging and construction may affect the correlation between drop height and Shock watch activation.

Tip N Tell Placement:

Place on two adjacent sides of the Shipping Container.

Revision Change Author Date
A ECO-2045 3/5/2015
B ECO-6347 Updated for palletizing and labeling,

updated responsibilities

Neal Hunter Nov 2018