Flexible packaging such as pallet wrapping and shrink-wrapping is a key component within the supply chain of many industries and products, combining all of the best qualities of plastics and films whilst boasting minimal materials, production and costs. Flexible packaging is a packaging solution that continues to grow in popularity on a daily basis, and therefore if you are considering utilising it within your business, we do not blame you! However, read this buyers guide first…
Why Flexible Packaging?
There are so many different reasons why businesses all over the world choose to use flexible packaging when it comes to packaging their much-loved products, however four of the main reasons definitely include:
- Flexible packaging is lightweight, allowing for cheaper shipping costs and bigger profit margins
- Flexible packaging is very eco-friendly in comparison to other packaging methods – using far less plastic than rigid packaging solutions
- Flexible packaging is highly attractive and be branded in so many different ways, allowing companies to provide their products with completely unique packaging
- Flexible packaging provides superior protection, protecting wrapped products with protection from sun, light, moisture, dirt, grease and more
Flexible Packaging Material Options and Terms
When it comes to flexible packaging there are so many different options available and therefore it is important that you understand some of the terms and materials used within the flexible packaging industry before you start looking for the most suitable flexible packaging solution for your company. To get you started, here are some of the terms/materials that you may come across:
Stand up pouches
Stand up pouches function as their name suggest – standing up right on shelves. Stand up pouches have airtight closure and boast incredibly visual capabilities, able to be customised to meet exact specifications and needs. Stand up pouches have multiple barrier layers of protection to suit almost all products.
There are many different flexible film materials available, however ten of the most popular include:
- (PA) Polyamide – A film that works well as an outer layer, boasting a gas/aroma barrier and superior heat resistance
- (PC) Polycarbonate – A moisture and heat-resistant barrier offering superb machinability
- (PEN) Polyethylene Naphthalate – A gas/aroma barrier with machinability and heat-resistance
- (PET) Polyethylene Terephthalate – A film that provides machinability strength
- (PET-G) Glycol-Modified Polyethylene Terephthalate – A heat-sealable food contact layer
- (POF) Cross-Linked Polyolefin – A heat-sealable film best suited for food packaging, but also used to laminate print products
- (PP) Polypropylene – A moisture barrier that can be combined with other gas/aroma barriers or coated with heat-seal coatings such as acrylate and PVDC
- (PS) Polystyrene – A printable and gas-permeable film that can be combined with other gas/aroma barriers
- (PVDC) Polyvinylidene Chloride – An O2 barrier and heat-sealable layer which provides high sheen and protects print
- (PVC) Polyvinyl Chloride – A gas/aroma barrier with machinability
Flexible foil packaging is mainly used by the food and pharmaceutical industries, used to keep products fresh and safe by blocking air, light, dampness, bacteria, and thus increasing product shelf live. Foil packaging is also advantageous because it is recyclable.
Focus Packaging – Here to Help
If anyone is unsure which flexible packaging solution best suits their business and individual/company requirements, our highly knowledgeable and professional team are only ever a phone call or email away and always happy to help. Do not hesitate to get in touch today.