Is a Resin Shortage Still Affecting Poly Bag Lead Times?

Is a Resin Shortage Still Affecting Poly Bag Lead Times?

The pandemic has had a huge impact on manufacturers from a variety of industries, including the poly bag industry. The good news is some have been adapting to the changes and improving procedures so that they can continue to provide their customers with high-quality products. 

How are manufacturers responding differently now? What are some specific ways we’ve changed or improved the processes since COVID-19 started? And most importantly, is there still any risk of lead times being impacted by resin shortages? Let’s dive into all three questions below!

What Caused the Resin Shortage?

Since the beginning of 2018, China has experienced an economic slowdown. The Chinese government has been trying to prevent an economic collapse by encouraging companies to move their manufacturing operations out of China and into other countries where labor costs are lower (like Malaysia). As a result, the largest supplier of resin in the world — China — has halted production.

Additionally, global demand for packaging materials has increased significantly due to an increase in consumer spending and new regulations on plastic waste disposal around the world (for example: France recently banned all disposable plastic bags). 

Many poly bag manufacturers were unable to meet this surge in demand for their products and experienced a significant drop-off in production. As a result, supply fell far below what retailers needed to keep up with customer demand.

How Can We Avoid Shortages and Delays in the Future?

The best way for the industry to avoid shortages like these in the future is to invest in recycling, renewable energy, and R&D (research and development). It’s also important for each of us to do our part and reduce waste. 

Proper recycling can result in fewer greenhouse gas emissions and less energy being used during production. It also helps keep materials circulating within our economy instead of being buried in landfills where they cannot decompose naturally for decades or centuries!

The goal of R&D is to reduce costs and improve efficiency in production through technological advancement and process restructuring. This can be done by reducing waste products, which can then be recycled or used in other ways. It can also be done by improving the transportation process for materials needed.

One recent research and development improvement is the addition of plant-based polymers to traditional poly bags, which helps to increase the biodegredation process if bags are not properly recycled. These greener poly bags are one great R&D step towards a safer, more environmentally friendly, and more stable poly bag industry. 

Are Manufacturers Responding Differently to the Resin Shortage Now?

There are always external forces at play that can affect resin supply, such as natural disasters or market instabilities. More broadly, the industry has learned some important lessons about how to deal with unexpected crises. 

Larger manufacturers, in particular, are now taking a hard look at their processes and looking for ways to make them more efficient—for example, by investing in new technology or reducing waste on production lines. 

They’re also reevaluating their supplier relationships and ensuring they have multiple sources lined up so they won’t be left stranded if one manufacturer stops producing material due to unforeseen circumstances — like hurricanes or pandemics. But some in the industry are still struggling to adapt and are forced to learn what happens if you are too set in your ways.

A-Pac Manufacturing is proud to deliver some of the shortest lead times in the industry. As a small, custom manufacturer, we’re much more nimble than massive corporations. Much like the large ship analogy, it is easier for us to adjust our course and stay flexible as the industry continues to change. 

We’re able to manufacture the custom bags you need at no minimum order and according to your schedule, and we’re proud to have maintained our short lead times despite the recent shortage. For the bags you want, when you want them, give the A-Pac Manufacturing team a call.

How to Choose the Right Poly Bag to fit your needs cta
The Best Packaging Solutions for Small Parts

The Best Packaging Solutions for Small Parts

If your business sells or deals with small parts on a regular basis, you’ll need an effective packaging solution to store, transport, and display them. When it comes to small parts packaging, the two leading options to consider are plastic containers and plastic (poly) bags. So, in this article, we’ll be reviewing the features and advantages of each option to help you determine which one is right for your business.

Plastic Containers for Small Parts Packaging

Plastic containers come in a wide variety of shapes including round, square, barrel, clamshell, and specialty dimensions. Round, square, and barrel containers are good for bulk quantities; with screw-top lids for easy access and reusability. Clamshell containers, on the other hand, are better in situations that call for permanently-sealed small quantities (e.g. retail). 

At around 12 mil, plastic containers are thicker than plastic bags. And, unlike poly bags, the firm yet flexible plastic — which is typically polyethylene terephthalate (PET) or HDPE — holds its shape, providing more protection for the contents. 

Advantages of Plastic Containers

Strength & Durability — As mentioned above, plastic containers provide a very high degree of protection. The durable polyethylene plastic serves as an effective barrier against dirt, dust, moisture, and other contaminants. The same can be said for poly bags — however, plastic containers’ rigidity grants additional protection against impacts, pressure, and punctures (especially for products with sharp edges/corners). Of course, that added protection comes at a cost, so plastic containers are really best for parts that need that added barrier. Otherwise, poly bags are likely the more suitable option. 

Reusable Bulk Storage — Plastic containers are lightweight yet rigid and durable, making them an excellent option for storing small parts in bulk. Since plastic containers often feature screw-top lids, they can be used continuously, providing quick-and-easy access to the contents within.

Shelf Appeal — Compared to poly bags, plastic containers can have more shelf appeal in the eyes of some consumers. So, if you’re selling small parts in a retail setting and you’re striving to position your products as top-tier, plastic clamshell containers may be preferable.

Plastic (Poly) Bags for Small Parts Packaging

Poly bags are made from thin plastic tubing or sheeting and can be ordered in virtually any dimensions. Small parts bags are often made from Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE) — although some bags may use High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE). The typical thickness for small parts bags ranges from ½ mil up to 6 mil — with 4+ mil generally being reserved for sharp objects like screws and nails that pose an increased puncture risk.

Advantages of Plastic Bags for Small Parts Packaging

Cost-Effective – Poly bags are an extremely economical packaging solution. This is largely due to the low costs of plastic production compared to other materials. For example, plastic costs 20x less to produce than paper or cloth. And, since poly bags use less material and are simpler to manufacture, they cost even less than plastic containers.

Efficient – Wicketed poly bags (which are seamlessly dispensed from a wicket wire) can be paired with an automated packaging system to enable rapid, efficient bagging. This streamlined bagging process can save time while also reducing packaging costs.

Lightweight & Compact – Poly bags are inherently thin and flat, making them very lightweight and compact in large quantities. This can be a significant advantage during storage and shipping. For example, if your business uses a high volume of packaging, plastic bags will take up far less space in your shop or storage facility than plastic containers.

Versatile & Customizable — Given the versatility of polyethylene plastic, poly bags are highly customizable. In addition to coming in virtually any size, small parts bags can be customized with logos, colors, special sealing options, and additives to modify the clarity, texture, and overall appearance. This will enable you to achieve the exact look and feel to match your brand.

Short Production Times — If you’re interested in ordering custom small parts bags, you won’t have to wait long to receive them: some poly bag manufacturers can fulfill custom orders in just 2-3 weeks. *Here at A-Pac Manufacturing, we take pride in our ability to offer quick turnaround times on custom orders. 

Custom Poly Bag Manufacturing

If your business needs to store and transport small parts, poly bags are an ideal packaging solution. At A-Pac Manufacturing, we provide customized small parts bags in the quantities you need, when you need them. Contact our team to learn more about our poly bag options and customization capabilities.

How to Choose the Right Poly Bag to fit your needs cta
How Custom-Printed Food Packaging Bags Can Set Your Business Apart

How Custom-Printed Food Packaging Bags Can Set Your Business Apart

The food and beverage industry is extremely competitive — making it a tough market to succeed in. With so many products for consumers to choose from (both on shelves and online), it’s imperative for food suppliers to stand out by creating a unique, memorable brand…and custom food packaging is one of the best ways to accomplish that. 

So, in this article, we’ll be outlining the advantages of custom-printed food packaging bags — along with some important considerations to keep in mind when ordering your custom food bags.

Benefits of Custom-Printed Food Packaging Bags

When it comes to packaged food products, the overall customer experience extends beyond the food itself: packaging also plays a very influential role. Custom-printed bags elevate the look and feel of your products while simultaneously allowing you to convey your brand’s image. And, on that note, let’s further unpack each of those concepts:

Enhanced Aesthetic (Shelf Appeal)

Humans are naturally visual creatures — which is why your packaging’s aesthetic is so important from a marketing and sales standpoint. One Ipsos survey found that 72% of Americans agree packaging affects their purchase decisions — and this phenomenon can have a profound impact on your bottom line. 30% of businesses report a significant lift in revenue following a packaging improvement. 

Packaging is usually the first thing consumers notice when evaluating product options. Given this fact, packaging that is eye-catching or visually appealing will have a distinct advantage. With custom-printed food bags, you can utilize colors, designs, and images to make your products stand out, ultimately enticing consumers to buy.

Branding & Messaging

In addition to aesthetic appeal, packaging also serves as a powerful branding medium. Branding involves aesthetics (color palettes, logos, etc.), but it also goes deeper by communicating ideas/values and evoking various emotions that can influence consumer behavior. And, when a brand resonates with consumers, this fosters brand loyalty and repeat purchases over the long term. 

One of the main ways that brands communicate their values with consumers is via brand messaging. In a marketing context, ‘messaging’ refers not only to the literal words and phrases brands use, but also to the emotional connotations those words and phrases carry. Across all industries, brand messaging has proven to be a highly effective marketing tactic — and custom-printed food packaging bags are the perfect way to showcase your brand’s message.

Key Considerations When Ordering Custom-Printed Food Packaging Bags

Now that we’ve discussed the benefits of custom food packaging bags, let’s review some important decisions to make before placing your order.

Bag Material and Specifications

Before you get into the customization aspects, you must first determine the right size and thickness for your bags. This will mainly depend on the product’s dimensions and weight. Obviously, you’ll need bags that are large enough to fit the product — but if you go too large, you’ll be wasting material. So, you’ll need to find bag dimensions that fit the product neatly without being oversized. 

Next, you’ll need to select a material to fit your needs. LDPE is one of the most common plastics for food packaging, but there are other options to consider (e.g. HDPE, Metallocene, EVA, LLDPE, etc.). You’ll also need to choose an appropriate thickness, which can range anywhere from 0.5-6 mil. Thicker bags provide additional protection and puncture resistance, so they may be necessary for heavier products or items with protruding corners.

*If you need help determining which material/specifications are best suited to your application, our experts here at A-Pac Manufacturing would be happy to assist you. Contact our team for a free consultation.

Order Quantity

Once you’ve determined your bag dimensions and thickness, the next step is to choose your order quantity. Like bag specifications, the key here is to find a balance between too much versus not enough. With larger quantities, you’ll enjoy a lower cost per unit. However, ordering an excessive surplus will waste material and money. 

Furthermore, some small businesses struggle with manufacturers’ minimum order requirements — when even the minimum order is substantially more than the business needs. That’s why, at A-Pac Manufacturing, we stand firmly behind our ‘No Minimum Order’ policy. 

Custom Poly Bags for Food Packaging

If you own or help manage a business in the food industry, you know how important it is to stand out against your competitors…and customized packaging is a simple, yet effective way to set your brand apart. At A-Pac Manufacturing, we specialize in custom poly bag solutions with rapid lead times with no minimum order requirements. Contact our team to learn more about how we can help you with your custom food packaging needs.

How to Choose the Right Poly Bag to fit your needs cta
What Are Sideweld Poly Bags?

What Are Sideweld Poly Bags?

When looking for packaging solutions for your products, could sideweld poly bags be the right fit for your business? 

Sideweld poly bags are rigorously tested to make sure that the seam is as strong as the base material. They come in a variety of colors, sizes, and thicknesses that can be customized to your unique application. These bags are a common choice for packaging frozen food, ice, plastic parts with sharp edges, and more. 

Let’s discuss the qualities of sideweld poly bags, what they’re used for, and their specifications. 

How Sideweld Poly Bags Are Made

Sideweld poly bags are made using a centerfolded film that is welded and cut, producing seals on the side of the bag. The bags are then tested to ensure that the seal is at least as strong as the base material. This makes sure the bags will not tear along the seal and are resistant to scratches, moisture, and rust. 

What Are Sideweld Bags Used For? 

Sideweld bags are manufactured from a variety of different materials, making them a versatile solution for a variety of applications. They are most commonly used for bread, meat/poultry, box liners, food bags, and parts bags.

The parts bags can be utilized by a wide range of industries, storing medical, plastic, metal, and industrial parts. The durability of sideweld bags makes them a great choice when scratch-protection, UV ray protection, and rust protection is required. They’re also a moisture-resistant option for powders, granules, frozen foods, and ice. 

Unique Features of Sideweld Bags

What makes sideweld poly bags unique is the strength of their seal. Tested using the highest quality standards to ensure they do not split, the seal is at least as strong as the base material. These bags keep items like frozen food, ice, and metal parts safe in their packaging. Whereas the seam of other packaging materials is typically a weak point, sideweld bags maintain their strength at the seam. Along with UV protection, moisture resistance, and scratch protection, they’re a secure solution that services a variety of applications across many industries. 

Sizes and Specifications of Sideweld Poly Bags

Sideweld poly bags can be manufactured in a wide range of sizes to fit your application. The smallest size is 2” x 3”, ranging up to the largest size of 52” x 52”. Available thicknesses include .75-4mil. If you’re not sure which size bag you need, check out our guide on how to measure poly bags

If you’re looking for poly bags in a specific color that matches your branding, we can help. Available colors include any shade of white, black, red, yellow, green, blue, and more. 

Sideweld poly bags can be manufactured from a variety of different materials, including:

  • low-density polyethylene (LDPE)
  • high-density polyethylene (HDPE)
  • linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE)
  • metallocene
  • vapor corrosion inhibitor (VCI)
  • ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA)
  • ultraviolet inhibitor (UVI)

The various materials used to manufacture these bags are each targeted toward particular applications like food, medical, industrial, metal, and more. These materials are approved by the Food & Drug Administration, the United States Department of Agriculture, and the Food Safety System Certification 22000. 

At A-Pac Manufacturing, we can manufacture any size poly bag. If you need a custom size, contact us for a free customized quote

Are Sideweld Bags the Right Fit for Your Business? 

Sideweld bags are a great solution for frozen food, medical, and industrial applications. The seams are at least as strong as the base material, they are available in a wide range of colors, and the size can be customized to fit your application. 

If you think sideweld poly bags may be a good fit for your application, A-Pac Manufacturing can help. We’re able to give you the size and quantity of bags you need, within the timeline you need them. GIve us a call or contact us online to learn more.

 

How to Choose the Right Poly Bag to fit your needs cta
Can Bread Bags Be Recycled?

Can Bread Bags Be Recycled?

When purchasing packaging materials, purchasing managers no longer only have to consider cost and durability, but the list of requirements has expanded to now include sustainability. Luckily, advancements in poly bag manufacturing are allowing for the innovation of recyclable alternatives that still align with the cost-effectiveness and durability of traditional packaging solutions. 

One specific area where purchasing managers may look to switch to environmentally-friendly packaging solutions is at the grocery store, and more specifically, the bread aisle. Let’s explore whether bread bags are recyclable, as well as some more sustainable alternatives to traditional bread packaging. 

Are Bread Bags Recyclable?

The short answer is, it depends. What it depends on is where you’re recycling them. 

The vast majority of community recycling centers do not accept bread bags in curbside recycling bins. The reason behind this is that most facilities do not have the proper equipment or enough personnel to be able to handle smaller, thinner plastic items like bread bags. These small plastic bags would clog conveyor belts and jam the machinery, requiring the problem to be cleared by hand. This would make recycling operations very costly and inefficient. 

An alternative to curbside recycling is the recycling programs facilitated by local grocery stores. Grocery stores offer recycle bins typically near their entrances where customers can recycle plastic grocery bags, bread bags, bubble wrap, produce bags, and more. 

However, this option is not always accessible as it should be. They’re inconvenient for customers. In addition to asking customers to save their plastic bread bags separately from the rest of their recyclables, this recycling option also requires customers to remember to bring their bags back to the grocery store. This option also requires the bags to be completely clean, free of crumbs, and dry. 

Are There Recyclable Options for Bread Bags?

Now that we’ve determined that bread bags can be recycled, let’s discuss the recyclable options available when manufacturing bread bags. When considering recyclable alternatives, one of the first options that comes to mind is paper bags. However, this option is quickly determined to be an insufficient solution for housing bread. Paper bags are not durable enough to safely store and transport bread.  

If we don’t want to use plastic to store bread, but we also can’t use paper, what materials are we left with? 

While the use of plastic bags is widely frowned-upon today, plastic still provides necessary packaging solutions for the agriculture, manufacturing, and healthcare industries. In order to continue meeting the demands of both customers and society as a whole, the poly bag industry continues to make improvements and drive innovation. 

Plant-based additives are driving the poly bag industry forward, providing customers with an option that contains less plastic, is made from fewer fossil fuels, and has less of a negative impact on the environment. Poly bags made with plant-based additives are also durable and cost-effective. Customers are able to access solutions that fit their budget, meet durability requirements, and address the environmentally-conscious demands of the market. Plant-based poly bags offer the best of both worlds!

A More Sustainable Option for Bread Bags

A-Pac Manufacturing is proud to offer a new sustainable packaging solution: poly bags manufactured with plant-based additive NuPlastiQ. This option allows you to enjoy the benefits of plastic bag packaging, while also building a better future for our environment. By adding up to 20% plant-based material, we are able to provide you with the durable poly bag solutions your business needs while also supporting green packaging initiatives. 

NuPlastiQ plant-based poly bags are customizable, recyclable, and utilize up to 20% less fossil fuels. You can feel confident in this plant-based solution because it’s cost-effective, provides an environmentally friendly option for conscious consumers, and meets the durability demands of product storage and transportation. 

Plant-Based Bread Bags

In the interest of providing customers with a more sustainable bread bag solution, A-Pac Manufacturing offers poly bag formulas with up to 20% plant-based additives. When looking for recyclable bread bags, this customizable solution is a great option. If you’re interested in exploring this sustainable packaging solution, for bread or truly any other packaging need you may have, contact our team

 

How to Choose the Right Poly Bag to fit your needs cta