Package testing or packaging testing involves the measurement of a characteristic or property involved with packaging. This includes packaging materials, packaging components, primary packages, shipping containers, and unit loads, as well as the associated processes.
Testing measures the effects and interactions of the levels of packaging, the package contents, external forces, and end-use.
It can involve controlled laboratory experiments, subjective evaluations by people, or field testing. Documentation is important: formal test method, test report, photographs, video, etc.
Testing can be a qualitative or quantitative procedure. Package testing is often a physical test. With some types of packaging such as food and pharmaceuticals, chemical tests are conducted to determine suitability of food contact materials. Testing programs range from simple tests with little replication to more thorough experimental designs.
Package testing can extend for the full life cycle. Packages can be tested for their ability to be recycled and their ability to degrade as surface litter, in a sealed landfill or under composting conditions.