The tube was invented in the USA by John Rand, who applied for a patent in 1841. The first tubes to be produced in larger quantities were made from tin and were produced in France for use with paint. Later on tubes made from lead were launched on the market.
The first machines for producing aluminium tubes were built in Germany in 1914. But it was not until the 1940s that aluminium tubes finally superseded those made from lead or tin.
Plastic tubes arrived on the market during the 1950s and the first tubes laminated with an aluminium barrier layer appeared at the beginning of the 1960s. Laminate tubes with barrier layers made from plastic (PBL) and ceramic (CBL) then followed in the 1990s.
About 35 per cent of all tubes produced in Europe today are made from aluminium, with about 27 per cent attributable to plastic and about 38 per cent to laminate tubes. Thanks to their special material properties, each of the tube types is used in specific fields of application and market segments. But when compared with other forms of packaging, they all offer those benefits that characterise the tube.