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Grocery Wax Pack Trays from the 1970s
Pre 1970 Wax Pack Trays
Wax Pack Trays
As far as I know grocery (or wax) trays can be traced back to late nineteen fifties or early nineteen sixties. The earliest known wax tray that I have seen a photo of is from 1962 Topps baseball. These originally wholesaled for $3.42 for a case of 36 trays. Wow!! The retail price was just .15 per tray. Just think... you could have made about .05 of profit per sale back then but if you kept them until today... you could probably sell them for somewhere in the range of $2,800 - $4,000 each depending on condition
Wax Pack Trays - The 1970's
The Trays in the 1970s
During the 1970s, wax trays were in their heyday. Topps produced trays for each of the four main sports although they did not always produce them for each sport every year. It is believed that Topps produced the following:
1970- BB & FB
1971- BB & FB
1972- BB & FB
1973- BB, FB, Basketball, Hockey
1974- BB, FB, Basketball, Hockey
1975- BB, FB, Basketball, Hockey
1976- BB, FB
1977- BB, FB, Basketball
1978- BB, FB, Basketball, Hockey
1979- BB, FB, Hockey (Note: there is considerable debate, based on the pricing circle and codes on the back of the trays and cello wrap, as to whether 1979 Hockey trays were produced by Topps or by a resealer)
Last Cardboard Backed Tray Pack
The last time Topps made a Tray with a backboard and cello wrapping was for 1980 BB. Toward the end of the 1980 BB production process, Topps shifted to a cello sleeve and that was used until 1985.
If you see any cardboard trays on the market after 1980 BB, (like 1980 Basketball or Hockey) please re-read the above.
Over the near term, I will be adding some comments about volumes in the market and how to spot resealed packs. I have come to learn, spotting the fakes isn't too difficult.
In the interim, let's hear from you. What do you think about the old Wax Trays? Do you remember the stores in which they were sold? I do, I remember paying a whole 59 cents for a tray at an A&P in Westchester County back in 1978! That was paper route tip money! Look forward to hearing your thoughts.
- Amazon.com: The Ultimate Guide to Collecting 1970 Baseball Cards eBook: Sports Collectors Daily, Uno
New 1970 Baseball Card e-book that will help you remember why you collect baseball cards… or what your collection is missing (with 50+ pictures)!
- Old Unopened Topps Packs (Wax, Cello and Rack)
Here is a link to a blog I've set up with some other interesting information on unopened items from the 1970s.
- Overview of the Unopened Pack Market from the 1970s.
If you an Unopened Pack Collector, you may enjoy this link to my About Me page on Ebay.
- eBay Store - The Unopened Pack Store and More: Cello Packs with Stars, Rack Packs with Stars, Cello
The Unopened Pack Store and More eBay Store. Where you can find Unopened Topps Wax Packs, Cello Packs and Rack Packs.
- Vintage Hockey Guide
Selling a Guide to Hockey Cards that should belong in the Smithsonian! Over 300 pages with 2800 photos. I own a copy and refer to it often!
- A look back at the best cello packs from the 1970s
Here is a question for you... if you had every single cello pack that was produced in the 1970s, how much would your collection be worth? If you guessed an estimated $4,500 plus, you would be correct!
- Unopened Packs - To Grade or Not Grade?
Here is a link to Tuff Stuff Magazine for an article on the Unopened Market and Grading.