6 Of the Most Common Types of Packaging Materials

6 Of the Most Common Types of Packaging Materials

Whether you are in the tech business, food industry, drinks manufacturing or you’re in the cosmetic industry, packaging is crucial. A good packaging should offer protection from any potential damage (leakage and breakage) that can deem the product useless. But packaging methods vary in every industry and depending on the nature of the product.  For instance, milk packaging material requirements would be different from cigarette packaging. Here are some of the common types of packaging:

Paper/Paper Board/Fiberboard

These are some of the most popular kinds of packaging materials due to their flexibility and versatility in use. Paper is widely used to make a range of thinner packaging products including paper bags, label, and butcher paper and so on. For the Paperboards, they are thicker and more durable than a standard paper. They are mostly used for cartons and boxes for packaging cereals, candy frozen foods and more. But for the fiberboard, they are more durable than both the paper and the paperboards. That is why they are used for the construction of corrugated boxes.

Advantages

  • Cheap
  • Can hold product shape
  • They are easily decorated for branding
  • Can be recycled

Disadvantage

  • Paper does not offer moisture protection
  • Easily torn by sharp objects

Glass

Glass bottles and jars have been used for decades, especially for packaging foods, cosmetic and beverage products. Even today, glass is widely used for packaging alcohol, honey, pickles, peppers, sprays, food and condiments amongst others products. The commercial glass material is made from a combination of calcium carbonate, silica and sodium carbide. That is why as packaging material, glass has remained relative cheap over the last decades.

Advantages

  • Can be sterilized
  • Gas and moisture protection
  • Transparent making products visible
  • 100% recycled

Disadvantages

  • Very fragile

Plastic Film

The most common type packaging in industries today is plastic. That is due to the numerous benefits it has in terms of the cost of packaging and ease of use. However, plastic has grown popular due to its flexibility and versatility in the packaging processes. Since paper are mostly made from the resin, it can be created to be rigid or flexible depending on the customer needs. They are also lightweight and easy to work with. It is such properties that have made plastic films the best alternative to cardboard and glass packaging.

Advantages

  • Lightweight
  • Can be molded to limitless shapes
  • Impact resistant unlike glass
  • Heat Sealable

Disadvantages

  • They are difficult to dispose of and thus a nuisance to the environment
  • Additives can contaminate some products
  • No absolute moisture and gas barrier

Foam

Foam may not be a typical packaging method like the rest, but it is very useful in the packaging on highly delicate products. The material is best known for its key properties such as good shock absorbing. Some of the delicate products include furniture, glass, TVs and anything else that may have sharp edges. However, foam cannot work alone. In most cases, cardboards and plastics films are used to encase the product and that foam. That ensures that all stays compathe ct while on transit.

Advantages

  • High shock absorbing properties
  • It is recyclable

Disadvantages

  • Cannot be used alone
  • A little bit expensive compared to other materials.

Aluminum Packaging

Aluminum packaging or what is commonly referred to as tin cans have been used for decades but has gained tremendous growth in the recent times. Most of this increment in demand can be attributed to the growing awareness of environmental degradation caused by plastic and wood materials. Whereas plastic has proven difficult to dispose of, wood materials have caused massive destruction of the forest cover. Aluminum package is proving to be the solution to such environmental damages. That is why the demand for tin can making machines has increased in the recent years. In fact, it has been proven that 7 billion foil cans and containers are being produced annually.

Advantages

  • Versatility- can be used for packages food, medical, beverages, cosmetics products and so on.
  • Offers moisture, sunlight, gas and other thermal elements protection
  • Tin cans can be recycled.
  • Can makers machines are easy to operate thus production is easy

Disadvantages

  • Aluminum is a non-renewable resource
  • Corrosion may destroy products

Tin Packaging

Demand for tin as a packaging material/method has soared in the last few decades. Tin cans are popular with food processing, beverage, cosmetics and pharmaceutical industries since the can preserve products for a very long period.  In the food industry, they are mostly for packaging oils, soup, fruits, ready meat, fish, and vegetables and so on. Unlike aluminum, tin is not corrosive, and thus the nutritional value of food is retained.  In addition can Tin can are easy to transport compared to the alternative can products in the market. They are not complicated make where a small tin can making machine can thousands of cans in a day.

Advantages

  • Versatility in use- can be used in a range of industries.
  • Offers moisture, sunlight and gas protection
  • Tin cans are recyclable.
  • Tin can making machines are cheap and easy to operate thus production is easy

Disadvantages

  • Tin is a non-renewable resource
  • Tin is a little bit expensive

These are the most common types of packaging methods/materials in the market today. Some such as plastic films is gradually being phased out due to their environmental damages. To date, tens of countries have already imposed a ban on plastic use whereas demand for tin or aluminum packaging is growing dramatically in the last few years. However, the choice of method greatly depends on the product.

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