Processing

Please wait...

Settings

Settings

Goto Application

1. WO2021000243 - TAMPER-PROOF BOTTLE CASE

Document

Description

Title of Invention 0001   0002   0003   0004   0005   0006   0007   0008   0009   0010   0011   0012   0013   0014   0015   0016   0017   0018   0019   0020   0021   0022   0023   0024   0025   0026   0027   0028   0029   0030   0031   0032   0033   0034   0035   0036   0037   0038   0039   0040   0041   0042   0043   0044   0045   0046   0047   0048   0049   0050   0051   0052   0053   0054   0055   0056   0057   0058   0059   0060   0061   0062   0063   0064   0065   0066   0067   0068   0069   0070   0071   0072   0073   0074   0075   0076   0077   0078   0079   0080   0081   0082   0083   0084   0085   0086   0087   0088   0089   0090   0091   0092   0093   0094   0095   0096   0097   0098   0099  

Claims

1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32   33   34   35   36   37   38   39   40   41   42   43   44   45   46   47   48   49   50   51   52   53   54   55   56   57   58   59   60   61   62   63   64   65   66   67   68  

Drawings

1   2   3A   3B   3C   3D   3E   4   5   6   7   8   9A   9B   9C   10   11   12A   12B   13A   13B   13C   13D   14A   14B   14C   14D   14E   14F   14G   15   16   17A   17B   18A 18B   19A 19B  

Description

Title of Invention : TAMPER-PROOF BOTTLE CASE

TECHNICAL FIELD

[0001]
Aspects of the present disclosure relate to an improved case or portions thereof for shipping and storing various products, including bottled liquids, and, more particularly, for improving the storage, transport, and protection of products such as beverage bottles.

BACKGROUND

[0002]
Wine and other beverage producers commonly use rectangular cases made of either wood or cardboard to transport bottles. These cases comprise internal compartments separated by wood, cardboard, plastic, or foam to provide a certain level ofprotection for the bottles inside. After the bottles are placed within the cases, the cases are closed and set out for shipment to the wholesaler, retailer, or customer. These closed cases of bottles present a number ofproblems due to the inherent flaws of the case designs. For example, a wholesaler, retailer, or customer may have difficulties viewing the contents of the case, determining if someone has tampered with the contents of the case, displaying the contents of the case, or any combination of these limitations.
[0003]
Ordinarily, to view the contents within a bottle case, each individual bottle must be removed from the case. The handling of each bottle creates an opportunity to damage the bottle. The ability to remove each individual bottle from the case also allows someone to tamper with the contents within the cases. For example, someone inspecting the bottles can replace a bottle with a different, less-valuable bottle. Current cases do not provide any evidence of this tampering. Finally, current methods do not provide an aesthetic system for displaying the bottles. A carboard case, for example, is made to be an expensive shipping container that is discarded once opened. The wooden case requires tools to wedge open the lid, which can be easily damaged when being pried apart from the body of the case. What is needed, therefore, is a system that provides bottle viewability, prevents tampering, and maintains an aesthetic form for displaying the bottles.
[0004]
SUMMARY
[0005]
Embodiments of the present disclosure address these concerns as well as other needs that will become apparent upon reading the description below in conjunction with the drawings. Briefly described, aspects of the present disclosure relate to an improved case or portions thereof for shipping and storing various products, including bottled liquids, and, more particularly, for improving the storage, transport, and protection of products such as beverage bottles.
[0006]
One aspect of the present disclosure includes a tamper-proof bottle case comprising a rear tray and a front tray. The rear tray can have one or more bottle cavities for holding a bottle. The rear tray can also have one or more slots for accepting the neck of the bottles stored in the bottle cavity. The front tray can slide onto the rear tray to fully encase and protect the bottles. In some aspects of the present disclosure, the front tray can be permanently attached to the rear tray by an adhesive or by mechanical attachment, such as by providing an expandable tab that expands into a tab slot. The permanent attachment can prevent tampering of the contents within the tamper-proof bottle case.
[0007]
In some aspects, the front tray can have one or more security flaps proximate the slot holding the neck of the bottle. Between the security flap and the neck of the bottle can be a neck securing platform securing the bottle within the slot holding the neck of the bottle. The neck securing platform can be integrated with the security flap or can be a modular feature placed between the security flap and the neck of the bottle. The security flap can be at least partially tearable from the front tray, and at least partially tearing the security flap may allow removal of the neck securing platform from contact with the neck of the bottle, thus allowing the bottle to be slid from the slot and removed from the tamper-proof bottle case. The front tray can include an inspection window for viewing the contents within the tamper-proof bottle case.
[0008]
Another aspect of the present disclosure includes a tamper-proof bottle case comprising a rear tray and a front panel. The rear tray can have one or more bottle cavities to hold bottles and one or more security panels hingeably connected to the rear tray. The one or more security panels can also include a bottle top holder that contacts the top of a bottle to secure the bottle within the tamper-proof bottle case. The one or more security panels can have an open configuration and a closed configuration. In the open configuration, a bottle can be placed into a bottle cavity and, in the closed configuration, the bottle top holder can secure the top of the bottle.
[0009]
In some aspects, the front panel can include one or more security latches detachably connected to the front panel. The security latches can be placed proximate the security panels and extend at least partially over the security panels. Once the front panel is placed onto the rear tray, the security panels can be held into their closed configurations by the security laches. The security panels can be opened by detaching the security latches from the front panel. In some aspects, an inner tray may be disposed between the front panel and the rear tray. The front panel and/or the inner tray can include an inspection window for viewing the contents within the tamper-proof bottle case.
[0010]
In any embodiment described herein, the components of the tamper-proof case may comprise paper-pulp, other fiber-pulps, cardboard, or plastics. In some embodiments, the components may comprise a biomass material. In particular, many of the bottles described herein may originate from a facility having an excess of biomass byproducts. These byproducts may include vine clippings, grape seeds, grape skins, barley, rye, sugarcane, and/or the like. In some embodiments, a biomass material may be included in any of the described materials. In some embodiments, the biomass material can be 40–60%of the case material by weight.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0011]
Reference now will be made to the accompanying figures, which are not necessarily drawn to scale, and wherein:
[0012]
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a tamper-proof bottle case, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0013]
FIG. 2 is a front view of a tamper-proof bottle case with a partially-removed security flap, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0014]
FIGs. 3A–3E depict an exemplary mechanical locking feature to secure a front tray to a rear tray, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0015]
FIG. 4 is a front view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0016]
FIG. 5 is a back view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0017]
FIG. 6 is a perspective view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0018]
FIG. 7 is a front view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0019]
FIG. 8 is a back view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0020]
FIGs. 9A–9C are front views of exemplary tamper-proof bottle cases with varying bottle capacities, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0021]
FIGs. 10–11 are perspective views of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case having a hingeably connected security panel, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0022]
FIGs. 12A–12B are perspective views of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case and depict removing a security latch from the case, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0023]
FIGs. 13A–13D depict an exemplary method ofreleasing a security panel, allowing the security panel to hinge from a closed configuration to an open configuration, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0024]
FIGs. 14A–14G depict an exemplary method of securing one or more bottles in a tamper-proof bottle case, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0025]
FIG. 15 is a back perspective view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0026]
FIG. 16 is a perspective view of a rear tray with three security panels in a closed configuration, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0027]
FIGs. 17A–17B are front and rear views of an exemplary front panel, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure;
[0028]
FIGs. 18A–18B are front and rear views of an exemplary inner tray, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure; and
[0029]
FIGs. 19A–19B are front and rear views of an exemplary rear tray, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0030]
The present disclosure can be understood more readily by reference to the following detailed description of exemplary embodiments and the examples included herein. Before the exemplary embodiments of the devices and methods according to the present disclosure are disclosed and described, it is to be understood that embodiments are not limited to those described within this disclosure. Numerous modifications and variations therein will be apparent to those skilled in the art and remain within the scope of the disclosure. It is also to be understood that the terminology used herein is for the purpose of describing specific embodiments only and is not intended to be limiting. Some embodiments of the disclosed technology will be described more fully hereinafter with reference to the accompanying drawings. This disclosed technology may, however, be embodied in many different forms and should not be construed as limited to the embodiments set forth therein.
[0031]
In the following description, numerous specific details are set forth. But it is to be understood that embodiments of the disclosed technology may be practiced without these specific details. In other instances, well-known methods, structures, and techniques have not been shown in detail in order not to obscure an understanding of this description. References to “one embodiment, ” “an embodiment, ” “example embodiment, ” “some embodiments, ” “certain embodiments, ” “various embodiments, ” etc., indicate that the embodiment (s) of the disclosed technology so described may include a particular feature, structure, or characteristic, but not every embodiment necessarily includes the particular feature, structure, or characteristic. Further, repeated use of the phrase “in one embodiment” does not necessarily refer to the same embodiment, although it may.
[0032]
Unless otherwise noted, the terms used herein are to be understood according to conventional usage by those of ordinary skill in the relevant art. In addition to any definitions of terms provided below, it is to be understood that as used in the specification and in the claims, “a” or “an” can mean one or more, depending upon the context in which it is used. Throughout the specification and the claims, the following terms take at least the meanings explicitly associated herein, unless the context clearly dictates otherwise. The term “or” is intended to mean an inclusive “or. ” Further, the terms “a, ” “an, ” and “the” are intended to mean one or more unless specified otherwise or clear from the context to be directed to a singular form.
[0033]
Unless otherwise specified, the use of the ordinal adjectives “first, ” “second, ” “third, ” etc., to describe a common object, merely indicate that different instances of like objects are being referred to, and are not intended to imply that the objects so described must be in a given sequence, either temporally, spatially, in ranking, or in any other manner.
[0034]
Also, in describing the exemplary embodiments, terminology will be resorted to for the sake of clarity. It is intended that each term contemplates its broadest meaning as understood by those skilled in the art and includes all technical equivalents that operate in a similar manner to accomplish a similar purpose.
[0035]
To facilitate an understanding of the principles and features of the embodiments of the present disclosure, exemplary embodiments are explained hereinafter with reference to their implementation in an illustrative embodiment. Such illustrative embodiments are not, however, intended to be limiting.
[0036]
The materials described hereinafter as making up the various elements of the embodiments of the present disclosure are intended to be illustrative and not restrictive. Many suitable materials that would perform the same or a similar function as the materials described herein are intended to be embraced within the scope of the example embodiments. Such other materials not described herein can include, but are not limited to, materials that are developed after the time of the development of the disclosed technology, for example.
[0037]
Embodiments of the disclosed technology include a tamper-proof case for storing and transporting bottles of wine. In various embodiments, a tamper-proof wine case may provide improvements to protecting the integrity of the bottled wine, as well as features that allow a user to more easily use the wine case. A tamper-proof bottle case according to the present disclosure may be used by wine manufacturers to package bottles of wine and also may be used by consumers to store the wine bottles at home or to transport the bottles.
[0038]
Throughout this disclosure, certain embodiments are described in exemplary fashion in relation to storing and transporting bottles of wine. But embodiments of the disclosed technology are not so limited. In some embodiments, the disclosed technique may be effective in storing and transporting bottles or containers of many other types of liquids. For example, and not limitation, the bottle cavities, bottle heel holders, and the like, as described herein, could be configured for spirit bottles, beer bottles, water bottles, and other bottles having different shapes and sizes.
[0039]
Various devices and methods are disclosed for providing and using a tamper-proof bottle case, and exemplary embodiments of the devices and methods will now be described with reference to the accompanying figures. FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a tamper-proof bottle case 100, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. The tamper-proof bottle case 100 can have a rear tray 102. The rear tray can include a bottle cavity 104 for holding a bottle 106. The bottle cavity 104 can be rounded to accept a rounded bottle, as shown in the figure. In other embodiments, the bottle cavity 104 can have other shapes such that the bottle cavity 104 can support bottles 106 of various shapes. For example, many spirit bottles can be square or rectangular, and it is contemplated that the bottle cavity 104 can also be square or rectangular to support and contain the bottle 106. The shape of the bottle cavity 104 can also be altered to correspond to the size of the bottle being stored within the tamper-proof bottle case 100. For example, a bottle 106 can take many different shapes and sizes (e.g., piccolo or split (187.5 ml) , demi or half (375 ml) , standard (750 ml) , magnum (1.5 L) , double magnum (3.0 L) , etc. ) , and a bottle cavity 104 can be provided to hold these and other sized bottles 106.
[0040]
A rear tray 102 can have any number of bottle cavities 104 according to the desired characteristics of the tamper-proof bottle case 100. For example, and not limitation, the tamper-proof bottle case 100 can have three bottle cavities 104, as shown in the figure (one is hidden in the perspective view) , but it is also contemplated that the tamper-proof bottle case 100 could include more or less than three bottle cavities 104, including a single bottle cavity 104.
[0041]
In some embodiments, the bottle cavities 104 can include an insulating material. For example, foam (e.g., extruded polystyrene foam) may be placed within the rear tray 102 proximate the bottle cavities 104 to create support for the bottles 106 and provide insulation for the liquid within the bottles 106. Other materials, including but not limited to gel packs, may be placed within a container as a bottle-holding support.
[0042]
In some embodiments, a rear tray 102 can include a slot 108 for holding the neck 110 of a bottle 106. Once a bottle 106 is placed into the rear tray 102, the neck 110 of the bottle 106 can slide down the slot 108, and the bottle 106 can rest within the bottle cavity 104. The slot 108 can provide support for the bottle 106 such that the bottle 106 cannot move laterally, and the slot 108 can provide a way to prevent tampering with the contents of the tamper-proof bottle case 100, as will be described herein. The number of bottle slots 108 provided in a rear tray 102 can correspond to the number of bottle cavities 104 provided in the rear tray 102. In some embodiments, a divider can be provided between two adjacent bottle cavities 104 (not shown in FIG. 1) . It is contemplated that a divider between two adjacent bottle cavity 104 can have any thickness to provide support between two adjacent bottles 106. The thickness of a divider can be from 5 mm to 20 mm, for example from between approximately 10 mm to approximately 15 mm.
[0043]
A rear tray 102 may include a neck cavity 112 positioned inside the rear tray 102 and between the slot 108 and the top 114 of the rear tray 102. The neck cavity 112 can provide room for a person to reach into the rear tray 102 and remove the bottle 106 from the tamper-proof bottle case 100. For example, a person can reach into the neck cavity 112, grasp the neck 110 of the bottle 106, and slide the neck 110 from the slot 108.
[0044]
In some embodiments, the tamper-proof bottle case 100 can have a front tray 116. The front tray 116 can be slid onto the rear tray 102 to enclose the bottles 106 within the tamper-proof bottle case 100. In some embodiments, a front tray 116 can include one or more security flaps 118. A security flap 118 can be positioned on the front tray 116 such that, once the front tray 116 is slid onto the rear tray 102, the security flap 118 is proximate the slot 108 and neck cavity 112 of the rear tray 102. By covering the neck cavity 112 and the slot 108, the neck cavity 112 cannot be accessed to remove the neck 110 of the bottle 106 from the slot 108.
[0045]
A security flap 118 can be at least partially tearable from the front tray 116. As described above, the security flap 118 can prevent a person from reaching into the neck cavity 112 of the rear tray 102 to remove the bottle 106 from the slot 108. By providing a partially-tearable security flap 118, the security flap 118 can be pulled to at least partially remove the security flap 118 such that the bottle 106 can be removed from the tamper-proof bottle case 100.
[0046]
A front tray 116 can include one or more heel holders 120 to hold and support the heel of a bottle 106. As described above, a bottle cavity 104 can be provided in a rear tray 102 to support one side of the bottle 106; in some embodiments, a heel holder 120 can be provided in the front tray 116 to support the bottle 106 from the other side of the bottle 106. It is contemplated that the heel holders 120 can be of similar dimensions and shapes as described above for the bottle cavities 104, and the quantity of heel holders 120 can correspond to the number ofbottle cavities 104.
[0047]
A front tray 116 can include a viewing window 122 for viewing contents within the tamper-proof bottle case 100. As described above, previous systems for storing and transporting bottles included wood or carboard cases, and to view the bottles within these previous designs, the bottles must be removed from the wood or cardboard case. It is contemplated herein that a tamper-proof bottle case 100 can allow a bottler, customer, customs agent, or any other person to view the contents within the case without removing an individual bottle 106. It is also contemplated that the bottles 106 within the tamper-proof bottle case 100 can be rotated such that all labels can be read on the bottles 106. Accordingly, in some embodiments, the features supporting the bottle 106 (e.g., the bottle cavities 104, slots 108, heel holders 120, etc. ) may provide minimal friction to allow the bottles 106 to be rotated. In other embodiments, the bottles 106 may not be rotated.
[0048]
To properly view the labels of a bottle 106, it is contemplated that a bottom of the viewing window 122 can extend to approximately 2 cm to approximately 4 cm from the bottom of a bottle 106 within the tamper-proof bottle case 100. It is also contemplated that a top of the viewing window can extend to approximately 3 cm to approximately 5 cm from the top of a bottle 106 within the tamper-proof bottle case 100. As will be appreciated, other viewing window 122 dimensions may be provided, and these dimensions are merely exemplary.
[0049]
In some embodiments, once a front tray 116 is placed onto the rear tray 102, the two trays 102, 116 can be permanently attached. The front tray 116 and rear tray 102 can be permanently attached by adhering the two trays 102, 116 together with an adhesive. In other embodiments, the two trays 102, 116 can be permanently attached to each other by a mechanical connection. For example, and not limitation, in some embodiments a rear tray may include a tab slot 124 to create this mechanical connection. The tab slot 124 can accept an expandable tab 126 on the front tray 116, wherein the expansion of the expandable tab 126 can permanently attach the front tray 116 to the rear tray 102. The tab slot 124 and expandable tab 126 are described in greater detail herein.
[0050]
When reference is made herein to permanently attaching two features together, it will be understood that this means the two features cannot be separated without evidence of tampering. For example, using a front tray 116 and a rear tray 102 as an example, if the front tray 116 is permanently attached to the rear tray 102, the two trays 102, 116 cannot be removed from each other without evidence that the two features have been separated. This can be evidence of an adhesive being pulled apart, evidence of a mechanical locking feature (e.g., the tab slot 124 and expandable tab 126) being torn or broken, or similar evidence of tampering.
[0051]
FIG. 2 is a front view of a tamper-proof bottle case 100 with a partially-removed security flap 118, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. The present disclosure describes various systems and methods for storing bottles 106, and these systems and methods also provide a way to detect whether someone has tampered with the bottles 106 within the tamper-proof bottle case 100. In some embodiments, and as described above, once a front tray 116 is permanently attached to a rear tray 102, the bottles 106 may be sealed within the tamper-proof bottle case 100. The security flaps 118 described herein may be removed or partially removed from the front tray 116 to allow bottles 106 to be removed. FIG. 2 shows an embodiment wherein an exemplary security flap 118 is partially removed from the front tray 116. Once the security flap 118 is removed or partially removed from the front panel, the neck 110 of the bottle 106 can be accessed, and the neck 110 can be pulled from the slot 108 in the rear tray 102.
[0052]
In some embodiments, the security flap 118 may be torn at a tear line 202, where a portion of the material of the front tray 116 is torn to open the security flap 118. In other embodiments, the tear line 202 may include a perforation line such that the security flap 118 can be torn or partially torn with a clean line. If the tear line 202 of a tamper-proof bottle case 100 is torn, it is evident that the bottle 106 may have been removed from the case and/or tampered with. In some embodiments, the tear line 202 may include tamper-evident tape to indicate whether a security flap 118 has been opened. Throughout this disclosure, reference to tamper-evident tape may include any tape known in the art used to indicate whether the tape has been removed, broken, or cut. For example, tamper-evident tape may include wording that prohibits the tape from being realigned and reattached once removed. Tamper-evident tape also may include language similar to “check contents if seal is broken” and the like.
[0053]
In some embodiments, a tamper-proof bottle case 100 may include a neck securing platform 204 positioned between a security flap 118 and the neck 110 of a bottle 106. The neck securing platform 204 may extend into the rear tray 102 and secure the neck 110 of the bottle 106 in the rear tray 102. The neck securing platform 204 may reside within the neck cavity 112 of the rear tray 102. In some embodiments, the neck securing platform 204 may be part of the security flap 118, or in other words, the neck securing platform 204 may be integrated into the security flap 118. In other embodiments, and as will be described herein, the neck securing platform 204 may be modular and reside between the security flap 118 and the neck 110 of the bottle 106. When the neck securing platform 204 is modular, it can be attached to the security flap 118 or it may be unattached.
[0054]
In some embodiments, a tamper-proof bottle case 100 may include a plurality of bottles 106 and a plurality of security flaps 118 positioned at each of the plurality of bottles 106. In these embodiments, it is contemplated that a single bottle 106 can be removed from the tamper-proof bottle case 100 by tearing or partially tearing the security flap 118 corresponding to the removed bottle 106. In these embodiments, the security flaps 118 corresponding to the non-removed bottles 106 may remain intact, as shown in FIG. 2. This embodiment may allow a customer to remove a single bottle 106 from the tamper-proof bottle case 100 but maintain the security mechanism (i.e., the intact security flap 118) for the non-removed bottles 106.
[0055]
In some embodiments, and as described above, a front tray 116 may be permanently attached to a rear tray 102. This permanent attachment may be facilitated with a mechanical locking feature 206. An exemplary mechanical locking feature 206 is shown in FIGs. 3A–3E, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure.
[0056]
FIG. 3A is a perspective view of a front tray 116 having an expandable tab 126. The expandable tab 126 can include one or more foldable wings 304a, b. FIG. 3B shows an expandable tab 126 wherein two foldable wings 304a, b are folded upward. After folding the foldable wings (either upward as shown in the figure or downward) , the expandable tab 126 can be pushed in and towards the rear tray 102, as shown in FIG. 3C. Once the expandable tab 126 is pushed toward the rear tray 102, the front tray 116 can be lowered onto the rear tray 102, as shown in FIG. 3D. As also shown in FIG. 3D, the folded expandable tab 126 can slide into a tab slot 124 positioned in the rear tray 102. The material of the rear tray 102 proximate the tab slot 124 in FIG. 3D is not shown in the figure such that the expandable tab 126 can be seen; at this step the expandable tab 126 would not be visible because it would be behind the rear tray 102. Once the expandable tab 126 is slid into the tab slot 124, the foldable wings 304a, b can expand behind the tab slot 124 to hold the front tray 116 against the rear tray 102. FIG. 3E is a cutaway view, showing how the foldable wings 304a, b can expand and unfold behind the rear tray 102 once inserted into the tab slot 124. The mechanical locking feature described herein is exemplary, and other mechanical locking features could also be employed to permanently attach the front tray 116 to the rear tray 102, as will be appreciated.
[0057]
FIG. 4 is a front view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case 100, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. FIG. 4 shows an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case 100 containing three bottles 106, which is in accordance with some embodiments. The exemplary tamper-proof bottle case 100 includes a viewing window 122 allowing full view of the labels 402 on the bottle.
[0058]
FIG. 5 is a back view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case 100, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. In some embodiments, a rear tray 102 may include dampening elements 502 on the back of the rear tray 102 and opposite the bottles 106 on the front side of the rear tray 102. The dampening elements 502 may be provided to provide shock and impact protection for the bottles in the tamper-proof bottle case 100. The dampening element 502 may include squares (as shown in the figure) , ribs, bumps, pillars, or other shapes, as will be appreciated, to provide shock and impact protection for the bottles.
[0059]
FIG. 6 is a perspective view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case 100, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. FIG. 6 shows a tamper-proof bottle case 100 similar to the tamper-proof bottle case 100 shown in FIG. 1. In some embodiments, a tamper-proof bottle case 100 may include a back panel 602 positioned behind the rear tray 102. The back panel 602 may be used to cover the dampening elements 502(shown in FIG. 5) such that the back of the tamper-proof bottle case 100 is smooth.
[0060]
In some embodiments, the neck securing platforms 204 can be modular, as described above. FIG. 6 shows an exemplary embodiment wherein the neck securing platforms 204 are modular. In some embodiments, a modular neck securing platform 204 can be positioned between a security flap 118 and the neck 110 of a bottle 106. The modular neck securing platform 204 can secure the neck 110 of the bottle 110 within the slots 108 in the rear tray 102. In an embodiment having a modular neck securing platform 204, a security flap 118 can be removed or partially removed by tearing the security flap at least partially from the front tray 116, and once removed or partially removed, the modular neck securing platform 204 can be removed from the neck cavity 112. Once the modular neck securing platform 204 is removed from the neck cavity 112, the bottle 106 can be pulled from the slot 108.
[0061]
In some embodiments, a tamper-proof bottle case 100 may include a plurality of modular neck securing platforms 204. FIG. 6 shows three modular neck securing platforms 204, which is in accordance with some embodiments of the present disclosure. Each modular neck securing platform 204 of the plurality of modular neck securing platforms 204 can be positioned between a single security flap 118 and the neck 110 of a bottle 106. A single bottle 106 may be removed from the tamper-proof bottle case 100 by removing or partially removing the security flap 118 corresponding to the single bottle 106, removing the corresponding modular neck securing platform 204, and pulling the neck 110 of the bottle 106 from the corresponding slot 108.
[0062]
In embodiments having a plurality of modular neck securing platforms 204, it is contemplated that each modular neck securing platform 204 can be separate pieces that are not collectively connected to one another. In these embodiments, a single bottle 106 can be removed by removing the loose and unconnected corresponding modular neck securing platform 204. In other embodiments having a plurality of modular neck securing platforms 204, two or more modular neck securing platforms 204 can be connected. For example, in some embodiments, two modular neck securing platforms 204 can be collectively connected to one another, and one modular neck securing platform 204 may not be removed from the tamper-proof bottle case 100 without removing the other modular neck securing platform 204. In other embodiments, two or more modular neck securing platforms 204 can be detachably connected to each other. For example, and not limitation, two modular neck securing platforms 204 can be connected with a perforation line, and one modular neck securing platform 204 can be removed from the tamper-proof bottle case 100 by tearing the perforation line and removing the one modular neck securing platform 204.
[0063]
In some embodiments, a tamper-proof bottle case 100 may include a plurality of modular heel holders 120. Similar to the one or more heel holders 120 described in FIG. 1, amodular heel holder 120 may be provided to hold and support the heel of a bottle 106. A modular heel holder 120 is unlike the heel holders 120 of FIG. 1 in that a modular heel holder 120 may be separate and unconnected to the front tray 116.
[0064]
FIG. 7 is a front view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case 100, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. FIG. 7 shows an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case 100 containing three bottles 106, which is in accordance with some embodiments. The tamper-proof bottle case 100 includes a viewing window 122 allowing full view of the labels 402 on the bottle. In this embodiment, the front tray 116 is flat, which is in accordance with some embodiments. A flat front tray 116 may provide an area for graphics or text. For example, and not limitation, a flat front tray 116 may provide an area to include company information or information about the products placed inside of the tamper-proof bottle case 100.
[0065]
FIG. 8 is a back view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case 100, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. In some embodiments, a rear tray 102 may be covered by a back panel 602 to cover the dampening elements 502 (shown in FIG. 5) such that the back of the tamper-proof bottle case 100 is flat and/or smooth (the rear tray is covered in FIG. 8 by the exemplary back panel 602) . A back panel 602 may provide another area for graphics or text.
[0066]
FIGs. 9A–9C are front views of exemplary tamper-proof bottle cases 100, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. FIG. 9A depicts an exemplary six-bottle tamper-proof bottle case 100, which is in accordance with some embodiments of the present disclosure. FIG. 9B is a tamper-proof bottle case 100 as described herein configured to hold a single bottle 106, which is in accordance with some embodiments. FIG. 9C is a tamper-proof bottle case 100, as described herein, configured to hold two bottles 106, which is in accordance with some embodiments. Although the tamper-proof bottle cases 100 described herein can be used alone to package bottles, each embodiment described herein, without limitation, can also be placed in an outer case for transporting the tamper-proof bottle case 100. For example, each of the embodiments, could be placed within a wood, plastic, or similar outer case prior to shipping the tamper-proof bottle case 100.
[0067]
It is contemplated that the features of a tamper-proof bottle cases 100 as described herein can be manufactured from a variety of materials, depending on the desired characteristics of the case. For example, and not limitation, a front tray 116 and/or a rear tray 102 may comprise paper-pulp, other fiber-pulps, cardboard, or plastics. In some embodiments, the components may comprise a biomass material. In particular, many of the bottles 106 described herein may originate from a facility having an excess of biomass byproducts. These byproducts may include vine clippings, grape seeds, grape skins, barley, rye, sugarcane, and/or the like. In some embodiments, a biomass material may be included in any of the described materials. For example, a fiber-pulp front tray 116 and/or rear tray 102 may include vine clippings, grape seeds, grape skins, barley, rye, sugarcane, and/or the like or any combinations thereof. The biomass material can make up any part of the material by weight, depending on the desired characteristics of the tamper-proof bottle case 100. It is contemplated that the biomass material can make up approximately 20–80% (e.g., from approximately 40%to approximately 60%) of the case material by weight.
[0068]
It is also contemplated that a front tray 116 and/or a rear tray 102 may comprise a biomass-plastic composite material. Biomass-plastic composites are materials that combine a natural biomass material with a thermoplastic to create a composite that benefits from the characteristics ofboth materials. The thermoplastic material creates a matrix, or scaffold, and the matrix can be embedded with small particles of the biomass material. The composites are corrosion and moisture resistant, unlike a wood case. The materials, however, can be shaped by using ordinary woodworking techniques. The composites provide the durability of a plastic material and the workability of a natural fiber product, such as wood. Biomass-plastic composites are also highly sustainable because the materials used to manufacture the composites may use waste products, i.e., recycled plastics and biomass waste from various industries.
[0069]
The thermoplastics that may be used in a biomass-plastic composite can include polyesters, polyolefins, polystyrene, polyethylene, polypropylene, polyvinyl chloride, polylactic acid, and/or the like. The thermoplastics used in the biomass-plastic composite also may include a combination of polymers. The biomass material can be wood-or cellulose-based products, such as wood flour. Other biomass materials may include but are not limited to pulp fibers, bamboo, or other natural materials such as vine clippings, grape seeds, grape skins, barley, rye, or sugarcane, as described above. The biomass material used in the composite can include a combination ofnatural materials.
[0070]
The material characteristics of a biomass-composite material are affected both by the amount of biomass material within the composite and the particle size of the biomass material within the composite. It has been shown that tensile and flexural strength of a composite material increases with increased particle size. For example, for particles ranging from between 0.25–2.00 mm, an increase in particle size corresponds to an increase in tensile and flexural strength. This characteristic, however, also depends on the weight percent of the biomass within the composite. For example, a composite material having a biomass weight percent below 20%does not show the relationship between increase in strength and increase in particle size. However, composite materials having a biomass weight percent of 40%do show this relationship. It is contemplated, therefore, that the components of a tamper-proof bottle case 100 may comprise a biomass-plastic composite material containing from about 20%to about 80% (e.g., from about 40%to about 60%) of a biomass material by weight. It is also contemplated that the size of the biomass particles can range from between 0.25–2.00 mm.
[0071]
In some embodiments, the tearable security flaps 118 may comprise the same material as the body of the front tray 116. It is also contemplated that the tearable security flaps 118 may comprise a different material than the body of the front tray 116. For example, when a plastic, biomass-composite, and/or other thick, durable material is used for the front tray 116, the tearable security flaps 118 may comprise a different material to help facilitate tearing the security flap 118 to release a bottle 106.
[0072]
FIG. 10 is a perspective view of a tamper-proof bottle case 100 having a hingeably connected security panel 1002, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. In some embodiments, in lieu of a tearable security flap 118, as described above in the discussion for FIGs. 1–9C, a tamper-proof bottle case 100 may include a security panel 1002 hingeably connected to a rear tray 102. The security panel 1002 can be connected to the rear tray 102 at a hinge area 1004 between the security panel 1002 and the rear tray 102. In some embodiments, the hinge area 1004 may be of similar material as the rear tray 102 and the security panel 1002. For example, and not limitation, the hinge area may be a thinner section of fiber-pulp that allows the security panel 1002 to open and close. In some embodiments, the hinge area 1004 may include a metal hinge, including but not limited to a butt hinge, a case hinge, a bi-fold hinge, a piano hinge, and the like. In some embodiments, the hinge area 1004 may include another type of soft hinge, for example a hinge made of leather, fabric, plastics, or the like.
[0073]
A tamper-proof bottle case 100 may include a front panel 1006 positioned adjacent to an inner tray 1008. The inner tray 1008 may be positioned between the front panel 1006 and the rear tray 102. As will be described herein, in some embodiments a tamper-proof bottle case 100 may include not a separate front panel 1006 and a separate inner tray 1008 but instead include a single integrated piece that includes the features of a front panel 1006 and an inner tray 1008. In some embodiments, the front panel 1006 and/or the inner tray 1008 can include a viewing window 122, similar to the viewing window 122 described herein.
[0074]
FIG. 11 is a perspective view of a tamper-proof bottle case 100 having a hingeably connected security panel 1002, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. In some embodiments, a tamper-proof bottle case 100 may include a security latch 1010. A security latch 1010 can be detachably connected to the front panel 1006. The security latch 1010 can extend at least partially across the security panel 1002 such that the security latch 1010 holds the security panel 1002 in a closed configuration.
[0075]
FIGs. 12A–12B are perspective views of a tamper-proof bottle case 100, and the figures show the process of detaching a security latch 1010 from a front panel 1006. FIG. 12A shows a tamper-proof bottle case 100 having three security latches 1010 corresponding to three hingeably-connected security panels 1002. In FIG. 12A, all three security latches 1010 are intact, thereby holding each of the security panels 1002 in a closed configuration. In FIG. 12B, the center security latch 1010 has been detached from the front panel 1006.
[0076]
FIGs. 13A–13D depict an exemplary method of releasing a security panel 1002, allowing the security panel 1002 to hinge from a closed configuration to an open configuration, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. Referring to FIG. 13A, in some embodiments, a security latch 1010 can be placed on the front panel 1006 proximate the security panel 1002, and the security latch 1010 can extend at least partially across the security panel 1002. The security latch 1010 may include a latch extension 1302, and the latch extension 1302 may extend at least partially across the security panel 1002.
[0077]
In some embodiments with an inner tray 1008 positioned between the front panel 1006 and the rear tray 102 (rear tray 102 not shown in figure) , the inner tray 1008 may extend above the security panels 1002, and the part of the inner tray 1008 extending above the security panels 1002 may also protect the security latch 1010 and/or latch extension 1302. For example, in FIG. 13A, a plurality of crowns 1304 extend above the security panels 1002, which is in accordance with some embodiments. Between two adjacent crowns 1304 may be a notch 1306, i.e., an area between crowns 1304. A security latch 1010 and/or latch extension 1302 may extend through the notch 1306 and between two adjacent crowns 1304, as shown in the figure. The crown 1304 and notch 1306 combinations may provide extra support for the security latch 1010 and/or latch extension 1302 such that the security latch 1010 and/or latch extension 1302 is not unintentionally detached from the front panel 1006.
[0078]
FIG. 13B depicts a tamper-proof bottle case 100 wherein a security latch 1010 has been detached from the front panel 1006. Once the security latch 1010 is detached, the security panel 1002 may be released such that the security panel can hinge upwards. In some embodiments having a crown 1304 and notch 1306 combination, as described above, asecurity panel 1002 may include a notch tab 1308 extending between two adjacent crowns 1304 and proximate the front panel 1006. In these embodiments, the security latch 1010 and/or latch extension 1302 may extend at least partially over the notch tab 1308 when the security latch 1010 is attached to the front panel 1006.
[0079]
In some embodiments, a security latch 1010 may be attached to a front panel 1006 via a perforation line 1310, as shown in FIG. 13B. In other embodiments, a security latch 1010 may not have a perforation line 1310, but the security latch 1010 may be torn from the front panel 1006. Other security measures could be provided to secure the security latch to the front panel, such as tamper-evident tape and the like. These and other methods serve the purpose ofproviding a detachable security latch 1010 that indicates whether the security latch 1010 has been removed. This may indicate whether the contents of the tamper-proof bottle case 100 have been removed and/or tampered with.
[0080]
FIG. 13C is another view of a tamper-proof bottle case 100 wherein a security latch 1010 has been detached from the front panel 1006. The view in FIG. 13C also shows two additional security latches 1010 that remain attached to the front panel 1006. In the exemplary embodiment shown in the figure, therefore, only the center security panel 1002 could be opened upwards, and the two adjacent security panels 1002 remain locked down by their respective security latches 1010.
[0081]
FIG. 13D shows a security panel 1002 being hinged upwards into an open configuration. By hinging the security panel 1002 upward into an open configuration, the bottle 106 residing under the security panel 1002 may be pulled from the tamper-proof bottle case 100.
[0082]
FIGs. 14A–14G depict an exemplary method of securing one or more bottles 106 in a tamper-proof bottle case 100, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. FIG. 14A is a perspective view of a rear tray 102 comprising three bottle cavities 104, which is in accordance with some embodiments. As described above, any number of bottle cavities 104 may be provided, depending on the desired capacity of the tamper-proof bottle case 100. Each bottle cavity 104 has a corresponding security panel 1002. The security panels 1002 in FIG. 14A are hinged open at their respective hinge areas 1004. This shows the security panels 1002 in their open configuration.
[0083]
In some embodiments, each security panel 1002 can include a bottle top holder 1402. The bottle top holder 1402 can be a platform that is adapted to contact the top of a bottle 106 when the security panel 1002 is hinged from its open configuration to its closed configuration. The bottle top holder 1402 can also constrain the bottle from moving up the bottle cavity 104 when the security panel 1002 is closed. It is also contemplated that the bottle top holder 1402 can be used to maintain pressure on a cork in the top of a bottle 106 so as to prevent the cork from rising from the bottle 106 during shipping and handling. A bottle top holder 1402 can be a half-crescent shape, which is a half-circular recess that is shaped to fit one half of the top of the bottle, as shown in the figure. Other shapes of a bottle top holder 1402 are possible. These other shapes include, but are not limited, to cones with indentations to fit the top of the bottle, full-crescent cones, and/or the like. It is contemplated that the bottle top holder 1402 can be modified according to the dimensions of the particular bottle 106 being stored in the tamper-proof bottle case 100 since, as will be appreciated by one of skill in the art, bottles can take many different shapes and sizes (e.g., piccolo or split (187.5 ml) , demi or half (375 ml) , standard (750 ml) , magnum (1.5 L) , double magnum (3.0 L) , etc. ) .
[0084]
In some embodiments, a rear tray 102 can include dividers 1404 positioned between individual bottle cavities 104. The dividers 1404 can be used to maintain separation between two adjacent bottles 106, further protecting the individual bottles 106.
[0085]
After a rear tray 102 is provided, bottles 106 may be placed in their respective bottle cavities 104. As shown in FIG. 14B, when the security panels 1002 are in their open configuration, the bottles 106 can be placed into the bottle cavities 104.
[0086]
FIG. 14C depicts the step of hinging the security panels 1002 from their open configuration to their closed configuration. Once the security panels 1002 are hinged from their open configuration to their closed configuration, the bottle top holders 1402 may contact the top of a bottle 106 so as to prevent the top of the bottle 106 from being pulled outward.
[0087]
FIG. 14D depicts the step of applying an adhesive to the rear tray 102 to permanently attach subsequent levels of the tamper-proof bottle case 100. In some embodiments, a first adhesive strip 1406 can be placed along the edges of the rear tray 102 and/or along the dividers 1404 (as shown in FIG. 14A–14C) . In some embodiments, the rear tray 102 may be manufactured with an integrated first adhesive strip 1406. For example, and not limitation, a rear tray 102 may include a first adhesive strip 1406 covered with protective tape. At the step shown in FIG. 14D, the protective tape of the first adhesive strip 1406 may be removed to expose the adhesive of the first adhesive strip 1406.
[0088]
FIG. 14E depicts the step of placing an inner tray 1008 onto the rear tray 102. As described herein, the inner tray 1008 may be permanently attached to the rear tray 102 by an adhesive, for example the first adhesive strip 1406 described above. In some embodiments, the adhesive may be placed on the bottom side of the inner tray 1008. In either case, the inner tray 1008 may be permanently attached to the rear tray 102.
[0089]
FIG. 14F depicts the step of applying an adhesive to the inner tray 1008 to permanently attach subsequent levels of the tamper-proof bottle case 100. In some embodiments, a second adhesive strip 1408 can be placed along the edges of the inner tray 1008. In some embodiments, the inner tray 1008 may be manufactured with an integrated second adhesive strip 1408. For example, and not limitation, an inner tray 1008 may include a second adhesive strip 1408 covered with protective tape. At the step shown in FIG. 14F, the protective tape of the second adhesive strip 1408 may be removed to expose the adhesive of the inner tray 1008. In some embodiments, an inner tray 1008 may include a viewing window 122, and, in these embodiments, a third adhesive strip 1410 may be provided around the viewing window 122. The third adhesive strip 1410 may be similar to the first adhesive strip 1406 and/or second adhesive strip 1408.
[0090]
FIG. 14G depicts the step of placing a front panel 1006 onto the inner tray 1008. In some embodiments, the front panel 1006 may be permanently attached to the inner tray 1008 by an adhesive, for example the second adhesive strip 1408 and/or the third adhesive strip 1410 described above. In some embodiments, the adhesive may be placed on the bottom side of the front panel 1006. In either case, the front panel 1006 may be permanently attached to the inner tray 1008.
[0091]
As described above, in some embodiments the front panel 1006 and the inner tray 1008 may not be separate features, but may instead by a single integrated feature. In these embodiments, the step shown above in FIG. 14E may include placing a single inner tray 1008/front panel 1006 onto the rear tray 102.
[0092]
FIG. 15 is a back perspective view of an exemplary tamper-proof bottle case 100, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. In some embodiments, a rear tray 102 may include dampening elements 502 on the back of the rear tray 102 and opposite the bottles 106 on the front side of the rear tray 102. The dampening elements 502 may similar to the dampening elements 502 described above in the discussion for FIG. 5. The dampening elements in FIG. 15 include pillars, which is in accordance with some embodiments of the present disclosure.
[0093]
FIG. 16 is a perspective view of a rear tray 102 with three security panels 1002 in a closed configuration, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. The figure shows the three exemplary security panels 1002 in a closed configuration, wherein the three bottle top holders 1402 are in contact with the three respective bottles 106. As described above, a rear tray 102 can hold three bottles 106, as shown in the figure. However, a rear tray 102 can be configured to hold more or less than three bottles 106, including configurations for a single bottle 106.
[0094]
FIGs. 17A–17B are front and rear views of an exemplary front panel 1006, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. FIG. 17A shows the back of an exemplary front panel 1006. In some embodiments, a front panel 1006 can include a viewing window 122, similar to the viewing windows described above. FIG. 17B provides a view of a front and a back of an exemplary front panel 1006. The exemplary front panel 1006 includes a plurality of security latches 1010, connected to the front panel 1006 at a perforation line 1310, which is in accordance with some embodiments. Each of the plurality of security latches 1010 include a latch extension 1302 to extend at least partially over a security panel 1002 (not shown in FIG. 17B) .
[0095]
FIGs. 18A–18B are front and rear views of an exemplary inner tray 1008, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. FIG. 18A shows the back of an exemplary inner tray 1008. In some embodiments, and as described above, a front panel 1006 (not shown in the figure) may be placed atop the inner tray 1008. The exemplary inner tray 1008 includes a plurality of crowns 1304 extending from the inner tray 1008 and notches 1306 disposed between adjacent crowns 1304. In some embodiments, a security latch 1010 and/or latch extension 1302 (not shown in the figure) may extend through a notch 1306. FIG. 18B shows the front of an exemplary inner tray 1008. In some embodiments, an inner tray 1008 may include one or more internal bottle cavities 1902 to hold and support a bottle 106 within the tamper-proof bottle case 100. For example, and not limitation, once a bottle 106 is placed within a bottle cavity 104 of a rear tray 102, the bottle cavity 104 of the rear tray 102 may support one side of the bottle 106. The inner tray 1008 can be placed onto the rear tray 102 and the internal bottle cavities 1902 may support the opposite side of the bottle 106. In some embodiments, an inner tray 1008 may include one or more heel holders 120 to hold and support the heel of a bottle 106. The heel holders 120 of an inner tray 1008 can be similar to the heel holders described above in the discussion for FIG. 1.
[0096]
FIGs. 19A–19B are front and rear views of an exemplary rear tray 102, according to some embodiments of the present disclosure. FIG. 19A shows a front view of a rear tray 102 having a plurality of security panels 1002, each security panel 1002 having a bottle top holder 1402. The figure shows each of the security panels 1002 in an open configuration. The figure also shows a plurality of bottle cavities 104 corresponding to each security panel 1002. FIG. 18B shows a rear view of a rear tray 102. As described above, dampening elements 502 may be provided opposite the bottle cavities 104 to provide extra shock protection for bottles within the bottle cavities 104.
[0097]
It is to be understood that the embodiments and claims disclosed herein are not limited in their application to the details of construction and arrangement of the components set forth in the description and illustrated in the drawings. Rather, the description and the drawings provide examples of the embodiments envisioned. The embodiments and claims disclosed herein are further capable of other embodiments and of being practiced and carried out in various ways. Also, it is to be understood that the phraseology and terminology employed herein are for the purposes of description and should not be regarded as limiting the claims.
[0098]
Accordingly, those skilled in the art will appreciate that the conception upon which the application and claims are based may be readily utilized as a basis for the design of other structures, methods, and systems for carrying out the several purposes of the embodiments and claims presented in this application. It is important, therefore, that the claims be regarded as including such equivalent constructions.
[0099]
Furthermore, the purpose of the foregoing Abstract is to enable the public, and especially the practitioners in the art who are not familiar with patent and legal terms or phraseology, to determine quickly from a cursory inspection the nature and essence of the technical disclosure of the application. The Abstract is neither intended to define the claims of the application, nor is it intended to be limiting to the scope of the claims in any way. Instead, it is intended that the invention is defined by the claims appended hereto.

Claims

[Claim 1]
A tamper-proof bottle case comprising: a rear tray comprising: a first bottle cavity; and a first slot configured to accept a neck of a bottle; a front tray comprising: a first security flap; and a first neck securing platform extending into the rear tray and configured to secure a neck of a bottle within the first slot, wherein the front tray is configured to permanently attach to the rear tray, wherein the first security flap is at least partially tearable from the front tray, and wherein the first neck securing platform is removable from the rear tray upon at least partially tearing the first security flap.
[Claim 2]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 1, wherein the first neck securing platform is a part of the first security flap.
[Claim 3]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 1, wherein the first neck securing platform is attached to the first security flap.
[Claim 4]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 1, wherein the front tray further comprises a heel holder configured to secure a heel of a bottle.
[Claim 5]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 1, wherein: the rear tray comprises a tab slot; the front tray comprises an expandable tab; and the expandable tab is configured to expand within the tab slot to permanently attach the front tray to the rear tray.
[Claim 6]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 1, wherein the front tray is permanently attached to the rear tray by an adhesive.
[Claim 7]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 1, wherein the front tray and the rear tray comprise a paper-pulp material.
[Claim 8]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 1, wherein the front tray and the rear tray comprise from between 40%and 60%biomass material by weight.
[Claim 9]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 8, wherein the biomass material comprises at least one of vine clippings, grape seeds, grape skins, barley, rye, or sugarcane.
[Claim 10]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 1, wherein the front tray comprises a viewing window.
[Claim 11]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 1, wherein: the first security flap comprises a perforation line; and the first security flap is tearable along the perforation line.
[Claim 12]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 1, wherein: the rear tray further comprises: a second bottle cavity; and a second slot configured to accept a neck of a bottle; the front tray further comprises: a second security flap; and a second neck securing platform extending into the rear tray and configured to secure a neck of a bottle within the second slot; the second security flap is at least partially tearable from the front tray; and the second neck securing platform is removable from the rear tray upon at least partially tearing the second security flap.
[Claim 13]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 12, further comprising a divider disposed between the first bottle cavity and the second bottle cavity.
[Claim 14]
A tamper-proof bottle case comprising: a rear tray comprising: a first bottle cavity; and a first slot configured to accept a neck of a bottle; a front tray comprising a first security flap; and a first modular neck securing platform disposed between the rear tray and the front tray and proximate the first slot, wherein the front tray is configured to permanently attach to the rear tray, wherein the first security flap is at least partially tearable from the front tray, and wherein the first modular neck securing platform is removable from the rear tray and front tray upon at least partially tearing the first security flap.
[Claim 15]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 14, wherein the front tray further comprises a modular heel holder configured to secure a heel of a bottle, and wherein the modular heel holder is disposed between the rear tray and the front tray.
[Claim 16]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 14, wherein: the rear tray comprises a tab slot; the front tray comprises an expandable tab; and the expandable tab is configured to expand within the tab slot to permanently attach the front tray to the rear tray.
[Claim 17]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 14, wherein the front tray is permanently attached to the rear tray by an adhesive.
[Claim 18]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 14, wherein the front tray and the rear tray comprise a paper-pulp material.
[Claim 19]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 14, wherein the front tray and the rear tray comprise from between 40%and 60%biomass material by weight.
[Claim 20]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 19, wherein the biomass material comprises at least one of vine clippings, grape seeds, grape skins, barley, rye, or sugarcane.
[Claim 21]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 14, wherein the front tray comprises a viewing window.
[Claim 22]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 14, wherein: the first security flap comprises a perforation line; and the first security flap is tearable along the perforation line.
[Claim 23]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 14, wherein: the rear tray further comprises: a second bottle cavity; and a second slot configured to accept a neck of a bottle; the front tray comprises a second security flap; the tamper-proof bottle case further comprises a second modular neck securing platform disposed between the rear tray and the front tray and proximate the second slot; the second security flap is at least partially tearable from the front tray; and the second modular neck securing platform is removable from the rear tray upon at least partially tearing the second security flap.
[Claim 24]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 23, further comprising a divider disposed between the first bottle cavity and the second bottle cavity.
[Claim 25]
A method of securing bottles, the method comprising: providing a rear tray comprising a first bottle cavity and a first slot; placing a neck of a first bottle into the first slot; inserting the first bottle into the first bottle cavity; placing a front tray comprising a first security flap and a first neck securing platform onto the rear tray; sliding the front tray onto the rear tray such that the first neck securing platform contacts the neck of the first bottle; and permanently attaching the front tray to the rear tray, wherein the first security flap is at least partially tearable from the front tray, and wherein the first neck securing platform can be separated from the first bottle upon at least partially tearing the first security flap, thereby allowing the neck of the first bottle to be removed from the first slot.
[Claim 26]
The method of Claim 25, wherein the first neck securing platform is a part of the first security flap.
[Claim 27]
The method of Claim 25, wherein the first neck securing platform is attached to the first security flap.
[Claim 28]
The method of Claim 25, wherein the front tray further comprises a heel holder, and wherein the method further comprises inserting a heel of the first bottle into the heel holder.
[Claim 29]
The method of Claim 25, wherein: the rear tray comprises a tab slot; the front tray comprises an expandable tab; and the step of permanently attaching the front tray to the rear tray comprises: inserting the expandable tab into the tab slot; and expanding the expandable tab.
[Claim 30]
The method of Claim 25, wherein the step of permanently attaching the front tray to the rear tray comprises adhering the front tray to the rear tray with adhesive.
[Claim 31]
The method of Claim 25, wherein the front tray and the rear tray comprise a paper-pulp material.
[Claim 32]
The method of Claim 25, wherein the front tray and the rear tray comprise from between 40%and 60%biomass material by weight.
[Claim 33]
The method of Claim 32, wherein the biomass material comprises at least one of vine clippings, grape seeds, grape skins, barley, rye, or sugarcane.
[Claim 34]
The method of Claim 25, wherein the front tray comprises a viewing window.
[Claim 35]
The method of Claim 25, wherein: the first security flap comprises a perforation line; and the first security flap is tearable along the perforation line.
[Claim 36]
The method of Claim 25, wherein: the rear tray further comprises a second bottle cavity and a second slot; and the method further comprises: placing a neck of a second bottle into the second slot; and inserting the second bottle into the second bottle cavity.
[Claim 37]
A method of securing bottles, the method comprising: providing a rear tray comprising a first bottle cavity and a first slot; placing a neck of a first bottle into the first slot; inserting the first bottle into the first bottle cavity; inserting a first modular neck securing platform proximate the first slot to secure the neck of the first bottle in the first slot; placing a front tray comprising a first security flap onto the rear tray; sliding the front tray onto the rear tray; and permanently attaching the front tray to the rear tray to form a tamper-proof bottle case, wherein the first security flap is at least partially tearable from the front tray, and wherein the first modular neck securing platform can be removed from the tamper-proof bottle case upon at least partially tearing the first security flap, thereby allowing the neck of the first bottle to be removed from the first slot.
[Claim 38]
The method of Claim 37, wherein the front tray further comprises a modular heel holder, and wherein the method further comprises inserting a heel of the first bottle into the modular heel holder.
[Claim 39]
The method of Claim 37, wherein: the rear tray comprises a tab slot; the front tray comprises an expandable tab; and the step of permanently attaching the front tray to the rear tray comprises: inserting the expandable tab into the tab slot; and expanding the expandable tab.
[Claim 40]
The method of Claim 37, wherein the step of permanently attaching the front tray to the rear tray comprises adhering the front tray to the rear tray with adhesive.
[Claim 41]
The method of Claim 37, wherein the front tray and the rear tray comprise a paper-pulp material.
[Claim 42]
The method of Claim 37, wherein the front tray and the rear tray comprise from between 40%and 60%biomass material by weight.
[Claim 43]
The method of Claim 42, wherein the biomass material comprises at least one of vine clippings, grape seeds, grape skins, barley, rye, or sugarcane.
[Claim 44]
The method of Claim 37, wherein the front tray comprises a viewing window.
[Claim 45]
The method of Claim 37, wherein: the first security flap comprises a perforation line; and the first security flap is tearable along the perforation line.
[Claim 46]
The method of Claim 37, wherein: the rear tray further comprises a second bottle cavity and a second slot; and the method further comprises: placing a neck of a second bottle into the second slot; inserting the second bottle into the second bottle cavity; and inserting a second modular neck securing platform proximate the second slot to secure the neck of the second bottle in the second slot.
[Claim 47]
A tamper-proof bottle case comprising: a rear tray having a first side and a second side, the rear tray comprising: a first bottle cavity configured to hold a bottle; a first security panel hingeably connected to the first side of the rear tray, the first security panel having an open configuration and a closed configuration; and a first bottle top holder disposed on the first security panel, the first bottle top holder configured to secure a top of a bottle when the first security panel is in the closed configuration; and a front panel proximate the second side of the rear tray, the front panel comprising a first security latch detachably connected to the front panel, the first security latch extending at least partially across the first security panel when the first security panel is in the closed configuration, wherein, upon detaching the first security latch from the front panel, the first security panel can open from the closed configuration to the open configuration, and wherein, when the first security panel is in the open configuration, a bottle can be removed from the first bottle cavity.
[Claim 48]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 47, wherein the front panel is configured to permanently attach to the rear tray with an adhesive.
[Claim 49]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 47, further comprising an inner tray disposed between the front panel and the second side of the rear tray and comprising a second botte cavity configured to secure a bottle.
[Claim 50]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 49, wherein the front panel, the inner tray, and the rear tray are configured to permanently attach to one another with an adhesive.
[Claim 51]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 49, wherein the inner tray further comprises: a first notch positioned proximate the first security panel; and two crowns adjacent a first and a second side of the first notch, wherein the first security latch extends through the first notch and between the two crowns.
[Claim 52]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 47, wherein the rear tray further comprises: a second bottle cavity configured to hold a bottle; a second security panel hingeably connected to the first side of the rear tray, the second security panel having an open configuration and a closed configuration; and a second bottle top holder disposed on the second security panel, the second bottle top holder configured to secure a top of a bottle when the second security panel is in the closed configuration, wherein, upon detaching the second security latch from the front panel, the second security panel can open from the closed configuration to the open configuration, and wherein, when the second security panel is in the open configuration, a bottle can be removed from the second bottle cavity.
[Claim 53]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 52, further comprising a divider between the first bottle cavity and the second bottle cavity, wherein the divider is from approximately 10 mm to approximately 15 mm.
[Claim 54]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 47, wherein the front panel comprises a viewing window.
[Claim 55]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 54, further comprising a bottle, wherein: the bottle comprises a bottom and a top; a bottom of the viewing window is from approximately 2 cm to approximately 4 cm from the bottom of the first bottle; and a top of the viewing window is from approximately 3 cm to approximately 5 cm from the top of the first bottle.
[Claim 56]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 49, wherein the front panel, the inner tray, and the rear tray comprise a paper-pulp material.
[Claim 57]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 49, wherein the front panel, the inner tray, and the rear tray comprise from between 40%and 60%biomass material by weight.
[Claim 58]
The tamper-proof bottle case of Claim 57, wherein the biomass material comprises at least one of vine clippings, grape seeds, grape skins, barley, rye, or sugarcane.
[Claim 59]
A method of securing bottles, the method comprising: providing a rear tray comprising a first bottle cavity and a first security panel hingeably connected to the rear tray; placing a first bottle in the first bottle cavity, the first bottle having a bottom and a top; hinging the first security panel from an open configuration to a closed configuration, wherein the closed configuration is proximate the top of the first bottle; securing a first bottle top holder on the first security panel to the top of the first bottle; adhering an inner tray to the rear tray such that the first bottle is disposed between the inner tray and the rear tray; and adhering a front panel to the inner tray, the front panel comprising a first security latch detachably connected to the front panel and extending at least partially across the first security panel when the first security panel is in the closed configuration, wherein, upon detaching the first security latch from the front panel, the first security panel can open from the closed configuration to the open configuration, and wherein, when the first security panel is in the open configuration, the first bottle can be removed from the first bottle cavity.
[Claim 60]
The method of Claim 59, wherein: the rear tray comprises an adhesive strip positioned between the rear tray and the inner tray; and the inner tray comprises an adhesive strip positioned between the inner tray and the front panel.
[Claim 61]
The method of Claim 59, wherein the inner tray comprises: a first notch positioned proximate the first security panel; and two crowns adjacent a first and a second side of the first notch, wherein the first security latch extends through the first notch and between the two crowns.
[Claim 62]
The method of Claim 59, wherein: the rear tray comprises a second bottle cavity and a second security panel hingeably attached to the rear panel; the method further comprises: placing a second bottle in the second bottle cavity, the second bottle having a bottom and a top; hinging the second security panel from an open configuration to a closed configuration, wherein the closed configuration is proximate the top of the second bottle; and securing a second bottle top holder on the second security panel to the top of the second bottle; the front panel comprises a second security latch detachably connected to the front panel and extending at least partially across the second security panel when the second security panel is in the closed configuration, the second security panel can open from the closed configuration to the open configuration upon detaching the second security latch from the front panel, and the second bottle can be removed from the second bottle cavity when the second security panel is in the open configuration.
[Claim 63]
The method of Claim 62, wherein the rear tray comprises a divider between the first bottle cavity and the second bottle cavity, wherein the divider is from approximately 10 mm to approximately 15 mm.
[Claim 64]
The method of Claim 59, wherein the front panel and the inner tray comprise a viewing window.
[Claim 65]
The method of Claim 59, wherein: a bottom of the viewing window is from approximately 2 cm to approximately 4 cm from the bottom of the first bottle; and a top of the viewing window is from approximately 3 cm to approximately 5 cm from the top of the first bottle.
[Claim 66]
The method of Claim 59, wherein the front panel, the inner tray, and the rear tray comprise a paper-pulp material.
[Claim 67]
The method of Claim 59, wherein the front panel, the inner tray, and the rear tray comprise from between 40%and 60%biomass material by weight.
[Claim 68]
The method of Claim 67, wherein the biomass material comprises at least one of vine clippings, grape seeds, grape skins, barley, rye, or sugarcane.

Drawings

[ Fig. 1]  
[ Fig. 2]  
[ Fig. 3A]  
[ Fig. 3B]  
[ Fig. 3C]  
[ Fig. 3D]  
[ Fig. 3E]  
[ Fig. 4]  
[ Fig. 5]  
[ Fig. 6]  
[ Fig. 7]  
[ Fig. 8]  
[ Fig. 9A]  
[ Fig. 9B]  
[ Fig. 9C]  
[ Fig. 10]  
[ Fig. 11]  
[ Fig. 12A]  
[ Fig. 12B]  
[ Fig. 13A]  
[ Fig. 13B]  
[ Fig. 13C]  
[ Fig. 13D]  
[ Fig. 14A]  
[ Fig. 14B]  
[ Fig. 14C]  
[ Fig. 14D]  
[ Fig. 14E]  
[ Fig. 14F]  
[ Fig. 14G]  
[ Fig. 15]  
[ Fig. 16]  
[ Fig. 17A]  
[ Fig. 17B]  
[ Fig. 18A 18B]  
[ Fig. 19A 19B]