Over 50-years ago, a young Greg Gurewitz’s bright idea for a plastic-bag company started as a challenge when his boss wouldn’t let him touch sales. Greg gathered the resources he had, which were few, and converted his bedroom into “headquarters.” Business started slow, but Greg plugged away until his first big break with a tropical fish distributor. Greg created a special, square-bottom plastic bag that allowed fish to live longer.
Tropical fish were big business in the Sixties, and the company quickly grew out of his bedroom and into his garage. Greg’s very first bagging machine – customized for the fish biz - still sits in Great American Packaging’s main office. You can call it an antique; we call it history!
Running the business solo 24/7, Greg’s garage headquarters became so traffic-congested with hauling trucks, his neighbors complained. The time had come for Greg (and the business) to move up and out. Great American Packaging was born. And shortly after, he married the love of his life, Marlene. Together, they nurtured the business and watched it grow.
Great American Packaging moved in and out of various buildings throughout downtown Los Angeles until settling into a modest factory in the heart of Vernon. As Great American Packaging grew, so did the core family values and entrepreneurial spirit remained at the center of our story and success.
In 1980, Great American Packaging invested in our first extruder used for low-density polyethylene. Seven years later, we purchased a four-color, flexographic printing press. We became a three-phase production facility and expanded into an ever-widening range of industries including consumer products and retail food, medical, industrial and more.
Over the years, we continued to purchase equipment and enhance our team. Sales grew; as did our family of staff, some of whom stayed with us for decades. We have been privileged to celebrate many 10-year, 20-year, 30-year and even 40-year employee anniversaries! Included in the list of Great American Packaging’s veterans are Greg’s family members: his nephew, daughter, wife and mother. We will never forget Chauncey, Greg’s mother’s teensy, tiny, terror of a dog, who acted as our security expert. That was before Great American Packaging was GMP-certified, of course.
In 2011, President Bruce Carter joined the team and took the company to new heights. Bruce advanced Great American Packaging with new technology and verve, which increased profits and widened our infrastructure.
Today, Great American Packaging is a family-owned-and-operated, multimillion dollar company with multiple extruders, printing presses and converting equipment. While we now operate as a mature, sizable company, our core beliefs in customer collaboration, problem solving and industry-best standards drive Great American Packaging’s operations at every level, every day.