Have you ever wondered about the history of the egg carton? While it is not usually in the limelight, egg cartons have an essential role in transporting and keeping eggs safely without any breakage. Unknowingly, the world depends so much on egg cartons thanks to the high demand for eggs, and this unsung hero deserves more credit and recognition. After all, the egg carton industry is worth about $8 billion in 2019.
The idea first came from a Canadian man named Joseph Coyle in 1911, when he witnessed an argument between a hotel owner and a farmer quarreling over the delivery of eggs that were mostly broken. Driven by innovation, Coyle then went back and thought of a container that would hold the eggs while not letting them bump against each other. As a result, the first egg carton was designed, which became the starting point first of this invention. However, Coyle was not a good businessman, and he did not make much money from the design. Time passed, and half a century later in 1969, the modern egg carton was patented.
Today, the dimpled shape of the carton cradles each egg while separating it from the others in the same carton. This prevents the stresses of transportation being transferred to the egg and hence breaking it. The egg carton takes a unique approach to packaging as they are all identical with the branding being printed onto the container itself rather than a separate bag as with cereals. In some forms, it has other uses such as insulation for buildings, a painting palette, or even as a place to plant seedlings.