Stay with me. There is a connection: a story about the way a defective chain worked to my advantage.
A little piece of me that not many people know is that I had a brief stint as a radio DJ at my college radio station – not the cool station. KXLU was the cool station – an alternative rock station that played cutting edge music, new on the scene.
The best quality plastic wrap dispenser in the world is now offered to the retail market by Allen Reed Company (ARC), the makers of the ZipSafe Slide Cutter. Since 1992, Allen Reed Company has provided the foodservice industry with valuable dispensing and cutting tools that have provided professional cooks and chefs from restaurants to local school cafeterias, with easy and effective ways to dispense and cut professional grade plastic wrap. Now, ARC is bringing this to the retail market with a twist.
Offered in six boxes with timeless, expressive and decorative prints, ChicWrap combines utility and beauty. Mostly importantly, it works! Cutting effectiveness and durability have been proven on the standard twelve and eighteen-foot wide by two thousand-foot long rolls of professional wrap used by the various kitchens it serves.
Now the ZipSafe Slide Cutter brings the technology to America’s kitchens where it will withstand the test of time refill after refill as will the wipe-clean box made of durable and sustainable materials. Made of rigid paperboard, the dispenser is composed of the same materials found in the packaging of Apple products like the iPhone and iPad.
Ian Reed Kaiser and Sean Allen Neiberger founded Allen Reed Company twenty years ago. Kaiser’s inventive thinking and relentless pursuit of function matched with Neiberger’s impeccable business standards and design sense combined to form the company in 1992 with the SafetyWrap Dispenser, a plastic wrap dispenser for use in professional kitchens. “We repeatedly heard horror stories about employees being sliced and sent to the emergency rooms due to injuries caused by the typical hacksaw blade,” said Neiberger. The SafetyWrap Dispenser also replaced the typical cardboard boxes that easily fall apart from exposure to kitchen debris and moisture.
The team spent the next two years selling the dispenser around the country at trade shows, but the SafetyWrap Dispenser was their only product. They sold direct to the industry until a company called Katchall Industries bought Safety Wrap and funded the team’s interest in the creation of a new, safer blade for cutting plastic wrap.
Kaiser and Neiberger introduced The GraterEdge Blade in 1995, the first safe alternative to the dangerous hacksaw blade. At this point, ARC had a solid understanding of the food service industry and how plastic wrap was being used and sold.
Kaiser recalls himself at age nine sitting in the back seat of the family car, a brown Pinto Wagon, as he, his mother and his sister waited in line at the car wash in Montrose, California. It was 1979. Eyes out the window, Ian watched as a man placed a cling sticker to the front windshield. Kaiser recalls his intrigue over the sticker. It was not a traditional adhesive sticker but one that could be removed, adjusted and replaced so the cling was controlled in a way that was unique to him and worthy of note in his mind. He stored it away to find it again when he needed it.
At Kaiser’s childhood home in La Canada, California, he and Neiberger began their most productive tests toward the new cutter, starting with the theory that cling could create a cleaner cut with plastic wrap. “Professional grade plastic wrap is particularly clingy and elastic so it’s difficult to handle. It bunches up and into itself. It rolls back into the dispenser. The UV coating on the wrap is slick but creates a static charge. It’s the best but it doesn’t cut easily,” said Kaiser. He drew on the picture in his mind of the window, the man, the cling of that removable sticker and put the two concepts together. Immediately, he and Neiberger began testing with an acrylic-based prototype blade and thin cling sticker placed over the cutting rails, or track, attached to the standard box. It worked!
Allen Reed Company has the track record to create space-saving, safe and durable dispensers to the foodservice industry and will provide the same, only with the retail consumer in mind. The difference now is that it is also keeping in mind a way for the consumer to look at the product as something to connect with on an artistic or whimsical level rather than just viewing it as a box of plastic wrap.
“Cutting anything is a problem: wrapping paper, tape, parchment paper, aluminum foil, and trash bags. We’re creating low cost solutions to address the needs and frustrations with dispensing and cutting in every day life. And, we’re making it both simple and safe,” Kaiser said. “The big picture is that the end user will see it as something you can keep on the kitchen counter or wherever to wrap leftovers. The cool graphics make it decorative but it’s functional. Most importantly, it works every time.”
Allen Reed plans to launch several retail products within the same simple and functional framework of ChicWrap using the technology invented with the ZipSafe Slide Cutter. Innovations to come include a giftwrap dispenser that alleviates common cutting, handling and storage challenges.
ChicWrap dispenser and plastic wrap is offered at $10.99. Refill rolls are offered in a four-pack at $15.99. Discounts are offered for bulk orders and retail sales.
To order, please visit www.chicwrap.com or visit the store locator to find a store near you.
July 13th, 2007 is the anniversary of my dad’s death. It was a Friday – Friday the 13th – a kind of retribution that would have made him laugh as he admits to doing his part in karma. He found humor in the way things settled into their place. Had he lived through that, or was able to talk about his death, he would have liked to hear that he died on a day known for bad luck and a teen horror movie franchise.
A third would be for the sake of the rhythm of threes, but I have to say it anyway.
A birth after a death.