Barber Foods a Portland ME-based producer of chicken products including boneless stuffed breasts stretch wrapped its pallet loads for years with minimal problems. But as environmental consciousness came to the fore stretch wrap disposal became an issue. "We had customers threaten that they might not buy our product unless we stopped using stretch wrap" says Bill Whittier production manager of Barber Foods. Some customers says Whittier wanted to charge Barber $5 per pallet to cover their disposal costs. The company sells to foodservice retail convenience store and warehouse club channels throughout North America and exports to companies as far away as Russia. Yet another customer told Barber about the Lock'n'Pop system from Key Tech (Mukilteo WA). In 1992 the system was installed. Two pneumatically-operated nozzles mounted near the end of a packaging line spray measured amounts of the liquid onto case tops. After taping and ink-jet coding hand-packed cases pass a photo-eye that triggers application of Lock'n'Pop onto the top of the carton. Boxes are then removed from the conveyor manually and stacked on a pallet to a designated height. When the shipment reaches the retail or foodservice outlet cases are easily unstacked or "popped" apart thanks to the low tensile strength of the adhesive. The product also leaves the printing intact. "All of our cases are preprinted with a pledge from founder Gus Barber" says Whittier. "We were very concerned that the adhesive wouldn't damage the printing. We did a lot of testing before we purchased the system."