Post Date: April 4, 2016

Four Points Fueling Pouches in Packaging

Here are four drivers of pouch packaging’s strong expansion.

1. Pouch Design

Many brand packagers are benefiting from pouch design versatility. For example, pouches literally can be formed to fit a brand’s needs, responding to consumer lifestyle trends. Pouches can be fitted with handles, zippers, easy-tear openings, spouts, straws, spoons and caps, to name just a few types of closures and fitments. They can be formed into different shapes for handling ease and distinctive shelf displays. Pouches offer portability and convenience for consumers at home and on the go.

2. Seals and Barriers

Pouch material advancements and stringent seal integrity are enabling brands to guarantee greater freshness, longer shelf life and less food spoilage for more types of products. The food and beverage industry, the largest pouch market, has been the primary beneficiary of these developments. Most food pouches are made of laminated films, or “laminates.” Today, there are more laminates that can withstand high autoclaving temperatures required for sterilization or pasteurization. Some are transparent films that allow for clear-window pouch designs.

3. Printing Methods

For brand packagers, pouch printing is a huge focus. Ten-color rotogravure printing is the gold standard, offering the greatest color and design possibilities. It is typically used in retort pouch applications because it can withstand the sterilization process.  When it comes to coding of lot, batch and expiration dates on pouches, AT Info’s industrial inkjet coders are up for the challenge.  New HP solvent-based inks come in self-contained cartridges with many colors to chose from, including black, red, white, blue and green.  See ink portfolio.

4. Sustainability

Empty pouches are lighter and less bulky to transport and require less space to store. There is a 26:1 ratio in truckloads needed to transport unfilled glass jars versus unfilled flexible pouches, with both capable of packaging equal amounts of product, according to DuPont data cited by the FPA. The FPA also presents compelling evidence that pouches offer a more efficient product-to-packaging ratio and occupy less landfill space than some other packaging types.

In conclusion, the use of pouches in packaging can provide competitive advantages for brand packagers. With manufacturing technology and material advances, their value proposition in terms of shelf appeal, shelf life and sell-through promises to keep yielding great returns.