Charles Sambrailo, Founder

The Sambrailo story began in 1923 when Charles Sambrailo first recognized the need to improve produce handling methods. He approached growers and shippers with packaging solutions such as paper liners designed to protect apples as they were packed into wooden boxes. This forward thinking led to our company’s long-standing role as an innovation leader in the produce packaging industry.

Throughout Sambrailo’s history, our family-owned company has remained committed to providing our customers with innovative and integrated packaging solutions that deliver measurable benefits. In 1957, Sambrailo improved upon the old strawberry cartons by developing trays with glued and folded-over windows. This insightful creation reduced fruit damage and increased tray strength.


2nd & 3rd Generations (circa 1970)

In the 1970’s Sambrailo continued to raise fruit packaging standards with the introduction of a new strawberry tray with a dividing zipper on the bottom. This concept expanded merchandising options. Sambrailo also began printing on solid fiber fruit baskets. A simple change, yet one that provided shippers with new branding opportunities.




In the 1980’s Sambrailo strengthened its presence in the packaging industry with a series of innovations. First, the company simplified carton assembly with the introduction of the one-piece hand-folded apple box. Next, Sambrailo developed the plastic dome lid for the solid fiber fruit baskets, thus making stacking possible and reducing mechanical damage. Subsequent packaging advancements include the single-layer long-stem strawberry tray, the development of insulated flower cartons, and the glued double-ended bushberry tray.

In 1987 Sambrailo revolutionized the packaging industry by introducing the first-ever plastic clamshell for fresh berries. Now products were not only stackable and well protected, but visible to consumers. Continuing in the tradition of responding to grower and shippers’ greatest needs, Sambrailo introduced the modular MIXIM® Packaging System in 1998. This unique packaging matrix of clamshells and trays on a standard 40×48 pallet dramatically cut down on cooling time and product bruising while maximizing freight cube. Each patented feature resulted in cost savings throughout the distribution chain.

2nd Generation CEO Bill Sambrailo with his son Mark

Former CEO, Bill, with his son Mark (circa 1990)

In 2009 Sambrailo Packaging launched a new line of RunRite® clamshells for blueberries and tomatoes. In a progressive and forward thinking collaboration with top machine manufacturers, these containers were carefully engineered to run on high-speed packing lines with minimal downtime and product loss. As such, RunRite is one of the most efficient and cost-effective clamshells on the market today.

In 2014, we introduced our new Go Greener!™ clamshells for organic growers. Go Greener™ clamshells are made from 100% post-consumer recycled PET using both clear and green beverage bottles. The unique decontamination process used in cleaning the plastic flake eliminates 99.9% of all contaminants, in accordance with strict regulation standards throughout North America and Europe. The translucent green color is instantly recognizable as packaging for organic produce by organic consumers on the retail shelf.

3rd Generation CEO Mark Sambrailo with his son Erik

4th Generation Sambrailo, Erik, and current CEO Mark Sambrailo



Today, Sambrailo has over 400 employees with facilities throughout North America, each supplying an unequaled range of integrated packaging and resource management solutions for growers and shippers. Through three generations of innovations, the philosophy of Charles Sambrailo still holds true today: listen to customers’ requests and continually improve products and services to ultimately improve the quality of the produce and help our customers grow their business.