The history of algus packaging

The Algus Packaging tradition encompasses over forty years of experience in the heat seal and thermoforming packaging industry.

Art Gustafson is widely considered to be the leading pioneer of today’s automatic heat seal and thermoforming industry and, indeed, the father of the rotary automatic heat seal machine. As a young man, he discovered his natural talent for design and innovation working on his family’s farm in Illinois. He joined Plastofilm Industries ( Wheaton , Ill. ) in 1954, starting in the die shop and subsequently moving up the engineering and management ladder.

In 1961, he ventured out and started his own business (Alloyd Company) and began designing and developing his own equipment line. The new line of equipment focused on providing customers with more efficient and cost effective solutions to what he saw as gaps in the industry. As a one-man operation, he designed, tooled, fabricated and then introduced in 1966 his revolutionary six-station rotary machine, the Alloyd Model 6SCBE. It became the standard of the industry and is still in use all over the world today.

In 1989, after building Alloyd to a company of over 300 employees, he sold the company. (Alloyd now operates as a division of Sonoco Corporation). Seeing a need in the industry for some new designs and concepts in packaging, Art Gustafson re-entered the industry he had so influenced in 1995 by forming Algus Packaging, Inc.

Since then Algus Packaging has designed and developed new more efficient packaging systems as well as brought his innovative ideas into the contract packaging business.

Proud member of

The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies

Corporate Offices and Machine Division

Peace Road Location

This Algus Packaging property consists of 115,260 SF Manufacturing / Distribution Warehouse and sits on approximately 15 acres.

Strategically housing our Corporate Staff, Sales Team, Machine Engineering and our In-house Fabrication Team.

  • In-house machining currently utilizing a highly trained staff
  • CNC vertical machining centers perform blister form tooling, samples and machine parts–supplying our customers high quality tooling with quick response times.
  • In-house fabrication centers perform painting, machine manufacturing, welding and final assembly. Machine technicians are available to assist with any customer packaging complication, as well as packaging systems development and design.

Production Facility

Taylor Street Location

Algus Packaging utilizes its 330,000 square foot facility in DeKalb, Illinois to meet the unique needs of our packaging customers. We are centrally located on two major interstate corridors, with rail access to Union Pacific. Because of our strategic Midwest location, Algus can provide a cost-effective solution to business’s logistical needs by receiving products and distributing then to the entire nation economically. Our products and services are within a day’s travel of 80% of the Midwest ‘s major population center. This is a key location in these days of high transportation costs and just-in-time packaging planning.

Our current operation includes the following features:

  • Dock space for loading and unloading 30 trucks at one time.
  • Racked pallet positions and bulk storage.
  • Fiber optic high speed connections to ensure reliability and expandability.

Arthur Gustafson: Inventor, Entrepreneur, Pioneer

Algus Packaging

If you talk about heat sealing and thermoforming technologies—especially rotary automatic heat seal machines —chances are you’ll talk about Arthur Gustafson or some of his inventions. He’s led the packaging industry in these technologies for more than 40 years.

Gustafson’s career began on his family’s farm, where he showed an aptitude for repairing and enhancing mechanical items. Machinery was his passion however, and in 1954 he signed on as an apprentice machinist in the die shop of Plastofilm Industries. He progressed well, enjoying frequent promotions in engineering, operations and management positions, while continuing to help on the farm.

Plastofilm was an early pioneer in visual carded packaging, and Gustafson began to look for ways to improve efficiency and quality in assembling a carded blister package. In 1961, working out of a chicken coop on the family farm, Gustafson founded Alloyd Packaging Company (today called Alloyd Brands) and focused his goals on better, faster and more cost effective blister packaging. By 1966, Gustafson had designed and built the first-ever fully automatic six-station rotary blister sealing machine. The machine quickly became the industry standard, and elevated Gustafson to “pioneer” status.

However, something was missing. To ensure optimum performance, his new breed of sealers required a more accurate and consistent thermoformed blister to allow for automatic feeding. and to meet that need, Gustafson built his own. The resulting thermoformer was unique in its ability to produce a very accurately cut custom blister at speeds high enough to maximize the capacity of the automatic sealers. In 1989, Gustafson sold Alloyd Packaging Company, which had grown from a one-man chicken-coop operation to a $40 million, 300-person firm.

After a few years in “retirement,” Gustafson re-entered the industry he had so influenced. He formed Algus Packaging, Inc. in 1995 with new concepts for packaging equipment he wanted to build and bring to market. He’s still introducing new products, including a next-generation blister-sealing machine (the U-8), and Algus has grown to more than 100 employees. The company’s goal remains “to define blister packaging for the 21st Century.”

Gustafson’s impact has gone well beyond packaging lines, however. His custom machine system is part of the Toymaker 3000 display still on exhibit at the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry—and he donates the time and resources to have employees ensure it’s in working order. He has given generously to food banks, animal shelters, Boy Scouts, schools and even to employees in the wake of personal tragedies.

From blister packs to the Boy Scouts, Arthur Gustafson has worked to make the world a better place.

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