Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Never Heard of the Packing Noodle? There's a Reason

"Packing It In: Why the Foam Noodle Couldn't Cut It in the Protection Racket"
Wired, June 22, 2009

"...Even though the Noodle was a vast improvement over the peanut, 'they didn't sell well,' says Carter Swift, a brand manager at 3M. 'They were just too different.' The Noodles came fitted together in compact, shrink-wrapped blocks. Retailers loved them because they took up such little shelf space. But consumers didn't understand that the blocks broke apart into hundreds of Noodles. In June, Burchard's brilliant idea was discontinued, and once again we're left with only God (and a few lesser earthly products) to protect our precious cargo."

Generally, I quote from the beginning of an article or post, by way of an introduction.

This time it seemed appropriate to show you the end. This Wired article starts by describing a near-disaster involving Michelangelo's La Pietà (which involves a familiar packing material), and takes you through the development - and ultimate failure - of a remarkable invention.

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