The Best Sustainable Packaging Material For Your Business

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Managing packaging materials with a sustainable, circular economy in mind is key to addressing the enormous amount of packaging waste that hits landfills every year. A circular economy is designing a packaging strategy with zero waste in mind.  Currently, around 91 percent of packaging waste is sent to landfills or ends up in the environment. In 2019, U.S. landfills released around 114.5 million metric carbon tons of carbon dioxide equivalent of methane into the atmosphere. 

Methane is 25 more times potent than carbon dioxide in accelerating global warming. There is tremendous opportunity for businesses to reduce and/or redesign the current packaging industry by investing time and resources into supporting and utilizing sustainable packaging materials. In this article we discuss what constitutes sustainable packaging, why sustainable packaging materials are important, and review the various environmentally friendly packaging options available in the market.


The Best Sustainable Packaging Material For Your Business

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Before diving into the various sustainable packaging options available, your business should make a point to also develop reduction and reuse goals and practices. The most sustainable option is to simply use less materials, and many times businesses discover there are untapped opportunities to reduce packaging demand or to integrate innovative, sustainable ideas into packaging. Many of these untapped opportunities also reduce costs. An example would be to reuse cardboard boxes received from vendors to pack outgoing products, increasing the usefulness of the cardboard boxes, and reducing the need for your business to purchase additional cardboard.

Other ideas include reducing the size or quantity of packaging, reducing the thickness of packages, switching to bulk ordering for inbound packaging, and working with vendors to establish take-back programs and utilizing reusable packaging. It is important to note that not all of these strategies may apply to your business or your products, and that they must be fully vetted to ensure they match your product needs. The most effective, comprehensive sustainable packaging strategy is to work to reduce and reuse resources while sourcing sustainable packaging.

What is Considered Sustainable Packaging?

Sustainable packaging is a broad term that encompasses many different realms of sustainability.

These criteria are a suggested framework for understanding sustainable packaging, and it is important to note that many sustainable packaging materials will include some (but not all) of the above criteria. Implementing sustainable design techniques into packaging is designing packaging with the main end-goal of doing as little harm to environment as possible. There are many ways to achieve this, and design is one technique to include in your overall materials strategy. When looking to understand and design sustainable, flexible packaging, keep the Sustainability Packaging Coalition’s sustainable packaging principles in mind.

Why is Sustainable Packaging Important?

Investing in sustainable packaging helps reduce your company’s carbon footprint and shows a commitment to improving and protecting the planet. Whether it is candy, cosmetics, spices, coffee, food, or any other type of packaging, the quality of a packaging product is increasingly determined by the sustainability of the product.  Additionally, investors and consumers alike are demanding that companies prove their commitment to meeting sustainability goals, pledges, and promises, through meaningful, measurable actions throughout the supply chain. 

Companies are beginning to turn their backs to the continued use of plastic packaging materials (when possible), and to stay relevant and competitive within the realm of sustainability and ESG your business should consider doing the same. More than 70% of packaging customers do not mind paying a premium for sustainable packaging materials – check out additional tips on what to consider when assessing eco-friendly packaging for your business. 

While this article provides a high-level overview of the different sustainable packaging materials available in the market, it is important to do your own due diligence to ensure you select the right materials for your business.

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Examples of Sustainable Packaging

Rapid innovation and thoughtful design have led to a variety of packaging options that are much more eco-friendly than typical, single-use plastic materials. Some of the most sustainable packaging on the market to choose from includes plant-based, cardboard, recycled plastic, bioplastic, and organic fabric packaging. Each provides its own benefits and drawbacks (learn more about the pros and cons of eco-friendly packaging here), but all move you closer to packaging that supports a more circular economy while promoting the sustainability and brand of your business.

Plant-based Materials

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The packaging market has dived into more creative materials sourced from plants, including cornstarch, mushroom, and seaweed packaging. Typically, these products are more likely to be environmentally friendly because they may be compostable, or break-down much faster than traditional plastics. The production of these materials is also usually better for the environment, in that it leads to less greenhouse gas emissions released. Due to increased demand and a need to preserve the environment, many packaging companies (like us!) are developing a variety of recyclable, compostable and biodegradable packaging options for businesses to capitalize on.

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Cornstarch: is derived from corn and has similar properties to traditional plastic, making it a versatile, flexible packaging option that can be used for bottles, packing peanuts, insulation, or general molded forms. Many of the cornstarch packaging options will dissolve when placed under hot water, effectively eliminating any product going to the landfill. Cornstarch packaging is biodegradable and usually compostable but breaks down much faster in a composting facility than an at-home compost set up. The potential downsides of utilizing cornstarch are that it increases demand for corn itself and for the water used to grow corn. While corn is heavily subsidized by the U.S. and relatively inexpensive, most of the U.S. is facing a looming water shortage crisis in the near future. Additionally, there will be a need for increased agricultural land use to accommodate cornstarch production. Wheat starch is another, similar sustainable packaging material utilized in biodegradable packing peanuts for the same outcome – the ability to dissolve in water or be composted, resulting in zero waste.

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Mushroom packaging is an affordable, up-and-coming plant packaging product that can hold smaller items and is used in lieu of Styrofoam. Like the name suggests, this packaging is made from mushrooms that bind together farming residue products. Since the farming residue would normally be discarded, this innovative sustainable packaging instead upcycles the material for continued use. Additionally, another positive for mushroom packaging is this residue was already created from other agricultural demands, whereas the corn for corn starch would be grown solely for packaging. This packaging material is 100% compostable (both in facilities or at home) and biodegradable, made of renewable materials without any petroleum products, and contributes to building a circular economy by helping eliminate waste sent to landfills. Mushroom packaging materials require low energy use for creation and generate low greenhouse gas emissions. Mushroom packaging is a great replacement for Styrofoam, and an excellent sustainable option to utilize where appropriate.

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A team of innovative packaging designers were recently celebrated for prototyping seaweed as packaging material. Seaweed is a plentiful, renewable resource already being utilized in the food industry. Seaweed grows within 45 days, requires no fertilizer, can be immediately harvested, and does not require any chemical processing. The seaweed production process is much faster than growing corn, which requires land and fertilizer to grow. The yeast residue from seaweed production can be added to animal feed, meaning that seaweed packaging is a zero-waste product. There is currently a large amount of seaweed produced in Indonesia that is not being utilized, so adopting seaweed packaging not only supports a healthy planet, but also supports Indonesian farmers and takes advantage of an already-plentiful available resource. It is important to note that seaweed packaging is a relatively new design and is currently only sensible for smaller packaging needs. As technology advances alongside companies looking to green up their supply chain, advances in seaweed packaging will continue and seaweed may become a more mainstream, viable option for larger-scale product needs.

While none of the above packaging materials are a one-stop-shop to meeting all your sustainability goals, exploring how they can fit into your packaging needs is a great way to invest in sustainable packaging.

Recycled Cardboard/Paper Materials

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Sustainability sourced, recycled cardboard and paper are some of the most recyclable materials on the market. Cardboard is the current industry standard in the ecommerce business, and is used to ship over 90% of products in the U.S. Work to source recycled cardboard and paper as packaging, as new cardboard and paper products emit a large amount of greenhouse gas emissions during the production process and require large amounts of energy and water to produce. Look for FSC-certified, recycled paper to ensure you are supporting sustainably managed forests and associated paper products. Cardboard and paper materials are where your sustainability packaging strategy comes in – implement reduction, reuse, recycle and redesign techniques to minimize environmental impacts when using cardboard or paper materials. Most cardboard and paper can also be composted at its end of life, which is a great way for these materials to avoid the landfill. Cardboard boxes can be recycled up to 25 times before reaching end of life, so develop a strategy to reuse these boxes as much as possible, and to encourage your consumer base to do the same.

Recycled Plastic Materials - Post Consumer Recycled Plastics

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Hardy plastic is still one of the sturdiest materials available and is renowned for supporting heavy shipments or items, and can aid in keeping food fresh. When needing to use plastic materials, source 100% recycled plastic to increase the lifespan of the plastic and keep it out of the landfill as long as possible. Be mindful of the amount of plastic needed and use only the required amount of plastic necessary to keep the items safe from damage.

Bioplastic Materials

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Another option is to utilize bioplastics, which were created to help phase out traditional plastics. The plant-based cornstarch and wheat packaging materials previously mentioned are typically bioplastics.  Bioplastics are biodegradable plastics used in food packaging and mailers, and are usually made from corn starch, sugarcane, or cassava sugars. Polylactic acid (PLA) is the most common bioplastic in the market today. Bioplastics provide an alternative to regular plastic, which takes thousands of years to break down and is made from nonrenewable sources. While bioplastic production produces less greenhouse gas emissions than traditional plastic production, there are still downsides to bioplastics. These downsides include creating additional demand for energy, land, and water to produce bioplastics, which may lead to accelerated deforestation. Bioplastic material is a better not best option, and a great steppingstone for phasing out of traditional plastics toward more biodegradable, sustainable materials.

Organic Fabrics

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Where possible, evaluate replacing plastic bags with organic fabric reusable bags. There are a variety of different organic fabrics available on the market now, including hemp, cotton, palm leaves, and tapioca fabrics. All of these fabrics have the ability to biodegrade much faster than plastic, and can also be reused by customers for other purposes (like a shopping or storage bag). If you use reusable bags, be sure and market to your customer base the reusability of the bags.

How to Choose Which Sustainable Packaging is Right for Your Business

Choosing the most appropriate sustainable packaging material for your business comes down to what your company needs and what you are looking to prioritize. Do you need a more flexible material that can be used in a variety of ways? Cornstarch packaging could be right for you. Looking for a zero waste, Styrofoam substitute? Mushroom packaging is the way to go. There is tremendous opportunity to create more sustainable packaging operations (and reduce costs) just by conducting an audit of current packaging materials and practices, and evaluating opportunities to reduce, reuse, or redesign your system. While achieving a circular economy with zero waste is a difficult task in the packaging industry, amazing progress has been made toward reducing and eliminating unnecessary packaging waste. We encourage you to source a variety of the sustainable packaging options above, and to mix and match to meet your individual business needs.

By Madeline Hinchliffe (Linked-in)

About the Author 

Madeline is a sustainability specialist who focuses on the integration of sustainable initiatives and programs. Currently Ms. Hinchliffe is a energy Analyst at CBRE

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Types of Poly Bag Zippers

Types of Poly Bag Zippers -- Plastic Bags with Zippers

The term Poly bags most specifically refers to mono-layer polyethylene bags which are the most used type of plastic bags globally for many applications. But the term has also come to refer more generally to any plastic bag even multi-ply laminated bags. Poly bags are flexible and inexpensive, proving to be great alternatives to cardboard boxes and other rigid space-consuming packaging.

Poly Bags Types of Poly Bag Zippers

The easiest items to find are the flat poly wholesale bags. These types of plastic bags are everywhere: storing food, electronic parts, hospital materials. They are those tiny zipper bag that are flat, reclosable poly bags, and hold the nuts and bolts and other pieces of the desk you bought to assemble at home. You can even see them on a roll when grocery shopping.

Secondly as opposed to the flat bags, there are poly bags that stand up on shelves and are easier to handle. The gusseted poly bags can be found packing several products as hard candy, bread, and more.

The the flexibility of re-closable poly bags have lead to their solid presence in the food industry. Flexible packaging is becoming more popular due to its versatility and customization.

One feature that is trendy among consumers is re-closable packaging, achieved with the addition of a zipper. Meaning that an open, flat package can be easily seals again, and the items in the plastic bags will be fresh for a long time. 

Why add a zip to your bag?

Flexible Packaging is typically heat-sealed in the loading and filling process. The barrier film keeps oxygen and moisture out while maintaining the original aroma, flavor, and texture as long as the bag is sealed. Adding a zipper will transform a regular bag into a reclosable one. These are the main benefits you will get with that change:

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Extended shelf life

A zip lock reseals the package preventing gases and vapor from getting in contact with the food and other items inside and can be used for a variety of applications. A bag folded or closed with clips or tape is not tightly sealed, and you will most likely end up chewing a mushy cookie. A zipper adds more comfort to the consumer since he knows the product will last, and there is no need to hurry and consume everything in the wholesale bag at once.

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Makes it easier for your customer to store unused product. 

Since the package can be safely closed again, the customer can store their items inside cabinets or drawers worry-free about spilled products. And without the need to have a stash of clips or twist-ties. It also saves room and money because you don't have to keep tons of jars and containers for every package you open every day. Plus, they are tamper evident.

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Perceived value to your brand.

study evaluated the impressions of consumers and brand owners through surveys about plastic bags and packaging. The results showed that 80% of brand owners said that packaging positively impacts brand value. And that customers are willing to pay more for flexible packaging with enhanced features. They even pointed resealable, easy to open, and extended product life among the top five must-have packaging features meaning they can be used for many different applications.

So now that you know all the benefits of having reclosable zippers, which zipper should you pick? 

Types of Zippers for your poly bags

Just like barrier films, there are many options to choose from according to your needs, products, and packaging styles. Here are some of the options we provide:
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Standard Flange Zippers

The most common and popular type of zipper. They have interlocking tracks on each side of the plastic bags that your press together to seal the pouch. They are also FDA-approved and very easy to proof and handle.

Wide Flange Zippers

This style has a longer lip above the zipper, providing more room for the customer to tear the pouch open without ruining the zipper while adding a nicer look to the bag

String Zippers

These are a no-flange zipper design, so it can't really be called a barrier-type zipper. It's the most economical option and can be produced faster since it requires less material than the other styles.

EZ Pull or Pull Tab Zippers

These are a newer zipper style, considered more convenient. In this type, the pouch can be opened by pulling a tear strip added in the front of the package without ripping the material or using scissors. To reseal the bag, all you have to do is press the top zipper together.

Dual Track/ Heavy Duty Flange Zippers

Similar to the standard zipper but with double vinyl tracks. They provide high resistance to the seal and prevent accidents due to this double safety. It is designed to handle heavy products, larger bags, and more opening-closing operations.

Powder Zippers

These are designed to prevent particles and crumbs from getting stuck in the zipper's tracks, which can reduce the seal's efficacy. These are used for fine powders and granulated products like flour and protein powders. Add them to your adhesive poly bag today. 

Child Resistant Zippers

It is a particular zipper style developed in a way that only adults can open it. Products that can be harmful to children as pharmaceuticals and medicinal cannabis, must meet government regulations towards their packaging. This zipper type is tested to ASTM standards and comply CFR 1600:20 requirements of child safety.

Honorable Mentions: Tin Tie's and lip and seal tape for plastic.

Tin Tie Types of Poly Bag Zippers

Tin Ties

Tin Ties are not zippers, but they server a similar function. A tin tie is a laminated metal strip coated in plastic that is attached to one side of the bag near its opening. To close the pouch top, the top is folded downwards, and each side of the strip is pressed against the packaging. As if the strip is "hugging" the bag and keeping it shut. It's a very traditional seal, largely used in the coffee industry.
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Lip and Seal Tape

Seal tape is another example of a non-zipper, performing a similar function. Seal tape is typically designed as either the initial low barrier closer (think poly mailer plastic bags), or as a single use re-closure. You might ask: Who would want to have a bag that can only be reused one time? The answer is typically specimen containers, or send back bags, where you want to ensure the consumer has fully and tightly closed the bag. 

Types of Zippers

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Child Resistant

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Powders Zipper

velcro 21 Types of Poly Bag Zippers

Velcro Style Zipper

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Dual Flange Zipper

Standard zipper 20 Types of Poly Bag Zippers

Standard Zipper

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Wide Flang Zipper #1

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EZ-Pull Zipper

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String Zipper

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Wide Flang Zipper #2

How to Choose the Right Zipper?

As you can see, picking one seal types is not a simple task. It depends on your product, its requirements, your brand, and your design. Our packaging experts are always one call away to help you find what is best for your business. Feel free to contact us anytime.

One of the most frequent questions we receive is how to choose between Tin Tie and EZ Pull Zippers. We will go through each one's pros and cons to try to make your decision easier.

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Tin Tie


  • Tin Tie adds a traditional and fancy look to your bag while hiding the heat-sealed area.
  • It's easy to use in the top loading process and by the end consumer. 
  • It also provides extra convenience by letting the customer know how much product is left when looking at how low is the folded tin tie.


  • This sealing style adds a few extra steps in manufacturing. After the bag is filled and heat-sealed, the tin tie is applied, the pouch is folded down, and tape shut so it won't fall apart in transit. This increases production costs and time.
  • Another disadvantage is the reduced barrier when the bag is reclosed. A folded bag doesn't entirely prevent contact with oxygen and moisture, 
  •  Also, if you want your customer to open the bag more easily without tearing it or using scissors, you will need to incorporate an EZ peel material, which is more costly than a regular heat seal material.
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EZ Pull


  • Its greatest advantage is already in the name. It's easy to load it – the bag is loaded through the top and sealed, without any extra step. It's easy for the customer to open and close it without any tool.
  • The press-to-close zipper provides a higher barrier after resealed, increasing shelf life. Since there is no tearing, the header's design is untouched, and there isn't a waste of material after the bag is open.
  • Plus, being about 3-5 cents cheaper per unit is a higher economic advantage.


  • Since this is a newer style types, more traditional customers may not like it. Some may even find it a little harder to scoop out the product through the zipper since the top of the wrap bag is sealed.
  • Also, the zipper takes some space of the header, getting in the way of the design, and the pouch might look less tidy when it the strapping is open. 

Customize your reclosable poly bags

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Although polyethylene plastic bags are everywhere, they don't provide the high barrier most products need. In these types of cases, flexible packaging can be fully customized: manufactured in several types of films, designed in any shape with any zipper or feature you want, and printed the way you imagined it. Contact our design team for more informants.

Are you ready to find your new supplier?

At CarePac, we have many years of knowledge about packaging materials, and we have great experience in providing top service. You can count on us to deliver the items you need for your business to thrive. Contact us for more information.

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coffee bags packaging

15 Awesome Coffee Bag Design & Packaging Ideas

Reclosable Bags

Some of the Best Coffee Packaging Designs

On the shelf or on a pop-up webshop, coffee is a massive commodity sold by the large, established brands, and the up-and-comers who’ve gained trust and traction from their consumers. The aesthetic, the visual identity, and the graphic design is the workhorse that guides every effective coffee brand. If you’re looking to push your coffee brand out there, the first step may be in looking at these shelves and seeing which draws your eye, and why.

Here are a few great brands to study, and contemplate why their coffee packaging stands out among the rest. The reason they are good, or are effective, can be answered by looking at what they focused on in their designs. And it’s also important to see, from a graphic design perspective, why these brands have either found a niche or climbed their way to the top of a particular demographic.

Packaging only requires a few pieces of information to be effective as long as customers can see that this is coffee, your company makes it, and lesser information like a slogan, tag-line, roast location, or facts on sourcing and nutrition. But to make those details stand out on the shelf or anywhere on the internet, you need a way of organizing the visuals, or a good design, to guide them. Think of your packaging design like a blank canvas, and your palette generally consists of: A logo (or logomark), typography (or wordmarks), illustrations, patterns, and colors. It’s up to you how much you want to turn the dial on each of these categories, but many great brands have achieved success through their own interpretations.

“Design is the silent ambassador of your brand.”-Paul Rand

1. Intelligentsia

Intelligentsia Coffee Bags

Intelligentsia Coffee is a far - reaching brand united under their solid logo design and confident red packaging. In this strategy, their wingtip logo is central to the packaging design, backed by a deliberate choice in bold color. The typographic elements are low contrast, simple, and easily read on a closer look, as if the bag wants to catch your eye with the royal red and immediately give you the necessary information. Intelligentsia sources from multiple farms, sporting a “democratic” approach to artisanal coffee. Using square bottom configuration makes the bag stand out emphasize details more. When you’re looking for coffee blends and you see these wings, you know it’s Intelligentsia.

2. Fuel America

Fuel America Coffee Bags

To contrast the driving force of a logo, Fuel America’s wordmark-centric identity borrows from the vintage American automobile and “trucker” aesthetic to deliver playful but legible typography. Their wordmark is front and center, decorated with circular layouts and modified lettering that calls attention to itself. This side gusseted style uses the information to decorate the bag, without losing the ability to read it quickly. You’ll notice that while Fuel America does have its own logomark at the top of the bag, the wordmark itself is what catches the eye first and foremost.

3. Ozo Coffee

Ozo Coffee Bags

Ozo Coffee has made the rounds online for their “glyph system,” which they’ve transitioned into a smaller role for their new bag designs. This brand is a great example of pattern designs, with the earth-toned grainy florals covering their entire square bottom bag. On the label, their “glyphs” are still used to signify the specifics of their coffee sourcing: region, origin, processing, taste, and elevation.

These are a series of icons and symbols with a “key” to decode each shape, developed so that the dedicated buyer is rewarded for reading into the design. It’s not necessarily a game like the back of a cereal box because it actually provides the patient eye with more information on the brand. That’s an accomplishment on its own, but their use of these glyphs and florals to texturize and add intrigue to the overall look is what marks them as a great example of pattern usage.

4. Koffee Kult

Koffee Kult Coffee Bags

Koffee Kult grabs attention by running the opposite direction from other bags on the shelf: simple black-and-white with strong modern typography. The letters are doing the work in this presentation without being shaped or warped for decoration. Typography is an entire industry built around making letters legible, playful, professional, or nearly any aesthetic a business might need. For this square bottom bag, the use of the tried and true, simple yet effective modern typeface accomplishes so much on its own. Koffee Kult complements this with small playful drawings on the side folds.

Monochromatic designs represent a deliberate choice not to use color. This trend is used to great effect by many brands, where the choice of what color to pick can be avoided altogether and still be as visually competent as a bag in royal red, for example. When color is removed, a strong focus can be applied to the package design.

5. Death Inc. Coffee

Death Inc. Coffee Bags

The death metal aesthetic of skulls and blackletter calligraphy are well-executed by Death Inc. Coffee, with another set of monochromatic bag designs that rely on their illustrations to catch the buyer’s eye. Multiple illustrations across their selection give each roast its own curated appeal, and the sharp ink-work of the grim reapers dominates the focus of the box bottom bag. Strong illustration work will present a great use of the “negative space”: how the blacks and the whites are distributed in an aesthetically pleasing way.

Death Inc. Coffee maintains an edge of visual interest with its monochromatic choice, rather than a contemporary focus. The typography here is scratchy, brutal, and more decorative than the extremely functional sans-serif fonts out there. The calligraphic letters are used primarily for style, but hearken back to the beginnings of typography when the digital touch didn’t exist.

6. Catfight Coffee

Catfight Coffee Bags

The death metal aesthetic of skulls and blackletter calligraphy are well-executed by Death Inc. Coffee, with another set of monochromatic side gusset bag designs that rely on their illustrations to catch the buyer’s eye. Multiple illustrations across their selection give each roast its own curated appeal, and the sharp ink-work of the grim reapers dominates the focus of the bag. Strong illustration work will present a great use of the “negative space”: how the blacks and the whites are distributed in an aesthetically pleasing way.

Death Inc. Coffee maintains an edge of visual interest with its monochromatic choice, rather than a contemporary focus. The typography here is scratchy, brutal, and more decorative than the extremely functional sans-serif fonts out there. The calligraphic letters are used primarily for style, but hearken back to the beginnings of typography when the digital touch didn’t exist.

7. Oddly Correct

Oddly Correct Coffee Bags

There’s a simplicity in black, white, or even paper brown bags when they’re chosen over bold matte or gloss colors; a reliable trend that is unlikely to disappear soon. Oddly Correct Coffee places itself on the shelves as a “low-brow/high-quality” brand. Their white square bottom bags are penned with eccentric and thin-lined ink illustrations of space cats, antlered bears, and turtles who all love coffee as much as you do.

Well-selected illustration is a strong compliment and proven guide for any brand on this list. The past three bags have proven the uses of art for the sake of branding, with each their own unique take on the medium, as well as strong use of the monochromatic. Illustrations tell a story where patterns may serve as pure decoration or texture.

8. Maiden Coffee Roasters

Maiden Coffee Roasters Coffee bags

Each of the previous bag designs represented a different use of logo, type, pattern, or illustration to stake their claim on the shelves, along with deliberate use of color (or black and white). While there is no right answer and each brand’s visual layout has spoken well for itself, sometimes the nuance of design elements is what achieves results.

Maiden Coffee Roasters, for example, has a strong wordmark that can stand on its own. But their main bag designs consist of smooth, geometric nature shapes that sweep across and seem to pass through the print area. They play with slightly subdued primary reds, yellows, and blues; and Maiden elects to strengthen all this real estate by placing only the roast location, in small capitals, wherever the composition allows them to fit.

Maiden’s new line of square bottom bags utilizes the wordmark first and foremost in gold, with these subtle colors backing them for a cleaner look that still rests in the realm of “Well thought-out, but not pretentious.” They confidently stride out into olive greens, ambers yellows, and oceanic teal while feeling united to their original brand identity.

9. Devocion Coffee

Devocion Coffee Bags

Somewhere between the timeline of typographic standards lies Devocion’s wordmark: A typeface that might represent the legibility, efficiency, and contemporary nature of Helvetica, but with echoes of hand-drawn Gothic calligraphy from centuries past. All this to say: Devocion’s bags are very simple in design. Everything you need to know is punched on to the bag in small letters, on a traditional elongated bag colored in earth tone or their trademark yellow.

This simplicity is used to great effect. These side gusseted bags aren’t trying to lure your eye with illustration or pattern; they’re just speaking for themselves. Designs like these emphasize a “come and see” attitude, where the package design isn’t represented as the selling point per se. If your brand’s wordmark can speak volumes, and your coffee bag provides all the information necessary without drawing attention to itself, then the roaster is drawing interest to what they actually do. The focus is on the bean, even though the bag is well-designed.

10. SEY Coffee

SEY Coffee Bags

Another Brooklyn-based roaster, SEY Coffee presents itself to the artisanal coffee drinker with sustainable practice at the forefront of their philosophy. Up until now, the aesthetics have been the driving force in this article, for good reason. Done well, they are visual cues to a brand’s ethos. SEY Coffee’s focus on sustainability is perhaps one of the most important factors in proving that coffee brands do have a mission statement besides sales.

SEY Coffee presents its roasts in square white boxes denoted with mellow, sweet colors. The three-letter wordmark sits opposite the roast information. You will always know where the beans are sourced from immediately from the package. And, judging on the simplicity in delivering this information, there’s not much more SEY Coffee wants to sell you on, which makes for an excellent package design.

11. Dark Matter Coffee

Dark Matter Coffee Bags

Coming in with a shotgun blast of psychedelic color, Dark Matter Coffee attempts to astral-project its beans off the shelves with non-primary magentas, pinks, cyans, and greens. The wild color-play of these illustrated bags creates an undeniable allure. The groovy, abnormal titling follows suit and travels back to the 70s and 80s while naming each roast. The illustrations themselves depict mystical beings and creatures of cosmic fantasy, and combined coatings of gloss and matte truly push the limit of a visual hierarchy in this category.

In all of this organized chaos, you can still make out the brand, the roast, and all of the necessary information. The visual interest of the square bottom bag itself is so strong that it could make a buyer enthusiastic before even trying the blend. If the shelf is a competition of visuals, Dark Matter Coffee races to the top of bags that “pop,” gravitating the consumer’s eyes by sheer force of will and hue.

12. Abracadabra Coffee Co.

Abracadabra Coffee Co.

Abracadabra Coffee Co takes a similar approach to color, but captures the aurora in a hazy pearlescent coated label on plain black-and-white designs. The Vermont roaster creates a unique logo out of letters (where definitions of wordmark and logomark become blurred), and uses this as the texture to stand out. They're colorful but contained

Abracadabra Coffee Co.

Their cold brew cans surround the logo with an overflow of sketched imagery: hands, noses, faces, and other symbols texturize the white or the black coating. This layout creates a layered complexity that doesn’t bog you down. In Abracadabra’s case, all this information still feels straightforward, not fueled by its decoration, but instead using that intrigue to generate interest in their coffee practice and ethos.

Where brands like Koffee Kult or SEY take the road of minimal space, these two brands exemplify the opposite. All of these brands are highly effective and well-designed, but their different use of design rules slowly reveal how vast your palette of design is, how much choice you have, and where you can narrow your focus and find your own voice. Again, there is seemingly no wrong answer as long as intent and smart design guide the way.

13. Necessary Coffee

Necessary Coffee Bags

Many of the top coffee brands in the world have traveled long and far on the basis of safe design. Folgers, for example, has kept its design plain, homey, and rooted in the 19th Century American consumer approach before decoration became a common advertising technique. Nowadays, graphic design innovates by looking at the past, the future, and everything in between.

In the case of Necessary Coffee, their bags hearken back into the honest and frontier-like beginnings of product design. The simple type and linework presents its product plainly, but with the austere and humble side gusseted style that befriends basement shelves and camping tents. They succeed on a vintage minimalism and a two-color setup of their bag designs.

14. Onyx Coffee Lab

Onyx Coffee Lab Coffee Bags

Onyx Coffee Lab may be the best all-rounder on this list in terms of maintaining visual interest and inviting the consumer to learn more. Onyx combines the black side gusseted bag, playful lettering, vibrant color accents, illustration, and pattern-work on a legible bag design. On paper, all these elements should lead to something rather “ornate,” but Onyx has taken a good swathe of trends and distilled it into its own visual identity. Onyx smooths the “edge” and hones tattoo parlour visuals just enough to appeal to a wider audience.

Onyx Coffee Lab Coffee Bags

Their recent coffee box offerings sport a much more luxurious appeal as one-half embossed floral patterns and one-half gorgeous imprinted wordmark. Both of these looks, tattooed and embossed, are achievable through Onyx’s commitment to balanced design. Much could be said on the efficacy, but largely it all boils down to the fact that Onyx Coffee Labs sends a clear message, and can jump between the aesthetics because of the solid foundation of graphic design work they’ve given to their brand.

15. PT’s Coffee

PT’s Coffee Bags

There have been enough examples of black-and-white bags and ultra-colorful bags. Like Intelligentsia’s design has proven, sometimes one color is all you need. Here, PT’s Coffee chooses a denim blue to lead their wordmark/logomark combination in a circular layout. The superb monoline illustrations add depth and decor to the label. Every element of PT’s Coffee has been treated with thoughtful design so that the whole system is undeniable. And while this circular type and logo is popular, PT’s Coffee is comfortable and honest with their presentation. Trend or not, this is their voice.

These are a series of illustrations designed to characterize the Kansas roaster’s Midwestern agrarian roots, while also tagging important roast details. The work done on the label and the logo are worthy of their own analysis, but the color is what draws the eye first. The blue is interchangeable to the complementary light brown, and larger square bottom bags sport a classic exposed brown paper that matches the scheme just as well. All of these components work in a wonderful harmony, led by that denim blue that exists either as a matte coat or as print on bare paper.

All of these champions of great package design are inspirational, sure, but the image is hard work in cooperation with good design and a firm understanding of the packaging process. There are a lot of moving parts involved, but thankfully, the ability to bring your visual identity to life and onto the shelves is getting easier.

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Coffee Packaging

Coffee Packaging Trends

Coffee Bags

In the recent past, coffee bags has garnered significant interest from both roasters and consumers. This comes in the wake of concerns over the environmental impact of packaging and research is being conducted in order to provide solutions to this matter. Besides, there is an influx of innovative technology and design options now available to the different coffee roasting companies. These provide new ways to differentiate and stand out from competitors in the coffee niche market.

Here are some Insights on Coffee Packaging Trends:

Compostable and Sustainable

Coffee packaging accounts for close to 3% of the total carbon footprint from the industry. This is particularly concerning for the environmentally savvy consumer and roaster. Therefore, through research and technology, the coffee industry is adopting eco-friendlier packaging seeking sustainability. Besides, these types of packaging are now the focus of more government regulations, all of which are focused on a cleaner environment.

Note that most consumers are more receptive to branding that leans towards environmentally friendly products.

Medium CareCompost KMEPS Coffee Packaging Trends

Due to adopting sustainable packaging solutions, there are reports of a significant and growing eco-friendly market segment. Specifically, environmentally savvy companies are seeking for solutions that are renewable, compostable, and biodegradable.

Listing Coffee Health Benefits on Labels

coffee benefits Coffee Packaging Trends

The humble coffee bean has a myriad of benefits. These benefits are exciting news for the consumer who care about the healthy aspects of the products he adds to the cart.

As such, labels that includes the health benefits of the products are one the trends that is rapidly growing. This appeals to the average consumer who would be inspecting the coffee packaging before their purchase. Altogether, this aims to hook the consumer who is changing their shopping habits to include foods or beverages that naturally improve their healthiness.

Unique Custom Design

Packaging stands to be the biggest differentiator between the several roasting companies that supply the coffee market. As such, one of the most popular trends is to go for designed coffee packaging that gives the brand a unique look.

For the packages, reusable printing plates are chosen due to high-quality finish. Further, digital printing has made it possible for a coffee roaster to produce in small batches without compromising on the quality. Finally, roasting companies are adopting more diverse color palettes, all of which are big attention-grabbers when the coffee reaches the shelf.

Notably, while custom-printing your coffee packages is a significant differentiator, it can be burdensome and costly, especially for single retailers or companies with minor market command. Still, it remains your best shot at capturing the attention of the average consumer and keeping them returning for your coffee.

Earthy Neutral Tones in Line with Natural Healthy Option Brand

For businesses keen on being an all-natural brand, the tendency has been to adopt earthy or neutral tones in their packaging. Using said color pallet appeals to the conscientious consumer who prioritizes sustainability and the environment.

Specifically, packaging that has varied colors of soil, natural minerals, or the ground. When combined with different hues of brown, the whole package has a harmonious scheme that makes the packaging stand out.

You could consider a brown-tinted earth color for your coffee brand, which should provide an extremely calming and grounding feel as the consumer peruses through the coffee aisle. You can include different hues of mahogany or leather for a luxurious finish. Overall, choosing a color that evocates the natural world usually sells the brand as eco-friendly and sustainable.

Materials that Meet Barrier and Marketing Needs

Coffee packaging Coffee Packaging Trends

The visual look of the packaging is one aspect, but another is the choice of the base material that the ink is laid on.  Packaging materials need to provide barrier, but also need to convey the same brand ethos as the art designs. Square bottom style configuration is more popular when you say coffee bags.

Coffee roasting companies have to consistently tweak their choice of packaging material to meet and respond to the new opportunities in the market. 

As such, these roasters have their eyes peeled for what the latest innovations are when designing the perfect coffee bag. They have to continuously test out various packaging materials to see which ones have shorter printing timelines, are seasonally fitting, and fit their budget.

Gloss packaging is preferred as it is an excellent medium for highlighting logos, words, and images on the packages. Besides, shiny packages ought to attract buyers to the brand. The downside of this packaging material is that it is not very natural-looking and might put off the environmentally-conscious consumer.

Matte packaging is the tendency for those who want a modern-looking pouch that stands out on the shelves. Besides, it makes it easier for the consumer to read off it than a gloss finish. Altogether, it is an excellent option for brands that want all-natural-looking articles.

Medium CareSilver PVEASY 1 Coffee Packaging Trends

Finally, a that is catching on is Soft Touch packaging. This gives a luxurious finish that should attract the high-end consumer. While it looks like matte packaging, the packaging is relatively more expensive and has a different feel to it.

Flexible Barrier to Keep the Coffee Fresher for Longer

Medium coffee shelf lift infographic Coffee Packaging Trends

Granted, coffee does not actually go bad as it is a dry food and therefore does not have a firm expiration date. Still, you want to store your coffee in a manner that ensures that it remains shelf-stable for longer.

The barrier film for flexible packaging is one of the newest trends that is proving to be a flex for the future. Its technology not only provide a good design that persuades the customer, but it is functional as it pertains to maintaining the quality of the coffee therein.

There is an increased inclination towards the CareClear clear plastic bags for coffee packaging. This material is not only affordable but protects your dry coffee beans against moisture and oxygen. Another tendency is the addition of EVOH, PVDC, and ALOX in the packaging material to enhance the capabilities of the base material.

Gaining more space among the trends is the use of CareSilver metalized PET pouches as the packaging material. These are economical, effective, and free of toxins, including BPA, TSE, Sulphur, and Phosphates, making them a healthy, effective packaging option. Besides, this material gives the packaging a reflective surface that should attract potential customers.

Medium CareFoil PANP Coffee Packaging Trends

The highest barrier for your coffee will be found by incorporating Aluminum foil. CareFoil PET/AL/PE offers significant barrier to oxygen and water. This capability can be strengthened using Mylar which makes it an even more effective packaging medium, being the best choice for long shipping periods.

Finally, for coffee roasting companies who want their packages to have a paper exterior look, the CareKraft packaging solutions make the perfect fit.

As a roaster, you may want to consider these insights about the emerging patterns and coffee packaging trends. Fortunately, there is an increased emergence of innovative designs that should help a brand differentiate itself from the rest of the herd, through technology, sustainability and unique marketing. This is particularly beneficial for companies that want to take advantage of the skyrocketing online orders. If you want to enjoy packaging that requires low minimum orders and has a 5% price match guarantee, reach out for an instant quote and order samples today.

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bag15 DSC00357 1 scaled The Best Food Packaging to Keep Your Brand’s Products Fresh

The Best Food Packaging to Keep Your Brand’s Products Fresh

bag11 DSC00257 scaled e1624026902319 The Best Food Packaging to Keep Your Brand’s Products Fresh

When taking a sealed bag from the shelf in the store, consumers may assume that content's freshness is assured. The cookies or fruit or candy will only be at risk of getting stale after the bag is opened.

Qualities like freshness, crispness, and taste are high-priority functions of food packaging. But in reality packaging's protection of the contents of a bag is limited to an extent. And that depends upon the design and quality of the food packaging.

A teeth-cracking hard protein bar or a soggy cookie can scare away consumers from brands, no matter how good the food package design is. There are two great villains that cause a food product to deteriorates inside the packaging.

MVTR and OTR for Best Food Packaging

The Moisture Vapor Transmission Rate (MVTR)—also called the Water Vapor Penetration Rate (WVPR)--is a measure of how much moisture gets into food packaging over a certain time interval. Depending upon the content and how long it is exposed, the results can vary greatly.

The Oxygen Transmission Rate (OTR) is a measure of the product's exposure inside the food packaging to oxygen. Oxidation of the product in the bag is the chief contributor to what we called staleness—a diminution of the qualities of texture and taste.

If these problems are not anticipated during the planning stages, then unfortunately the customer experience may be negatively impacted. Consumers may or may not check for a use-by date on the bag—and the reliability of the freshness date, of course, is limited by appropriate packaging.

At Carepac, we are dedicated to food product safety and go to great lengths to ensure your product packaging design is up to date with the highest standards. Fortunately, there are reliable standards for measuring MVTR and OTR and, in addition, accurate instruments for making those measurements.

International Standards and Accurate Packaging Testing

Both the vapor and gas are measured using tests defined by two standards:

ASTM International, as the name implies, is an international standards organization. It works out and publishes voluntary consensus technical standards for many products and services. (Formerly it was called the American Society for Testing and Materials.)

The International Organization for Standardization performs the same functions, bringing together representatives from national standards organizations to develop and publish worldwide technical, industrial, and commercial standards.

Referring to these organizations, Carepac can monitor international standards defined for tests that measure MVTR and OTR. One leading provider of the specialized equipment needed to perform these tests is MOCON.

Calculating Packaging's Barrier Against Penetration

One useful and reliable calculator of the barrier against moisture or oxygen provided by a given packaging is the Norner Barrier Calculator (a free version can be accessed here: https://barrier.norner.no/).

The calculator allows you to select different packaging geometries such as film, cup, bottle, and cuboid. This simulates your target packaging design. The calculating models then put out an estimate of the water vapor or oxygen transmission rate through various plastics, including, of course, packaging material.

Barrier properties of limited types of packaging can be best studied by this means and changes in layers, geometry, and in-mold label can be tested and compared.  The results make the calculator a highly useful tool for designing and developing packaging with reliable performance in protecting different products in different conditions of storage and exposure.

Typically, the tests measure the number of grams that are lost or gained through a barrier over a given period, such as 24 hours. Since transmission through a package (or its penetration) is to be controlled, the lower the readout, the better. A number lower than 1 gram is considered a high barrier.

Degassing Valve 2 The Best Food Packaging to Keep Your Brand’s Products Fresh

The challenges: finding the barrier level required by a product

Putting this in context is a top priority since it’s a common misconception among most brands. Not every packaged product needs the highest achievable barrier. Here are some data to exemplify:

  • A foil barrier is "highest": .0006
  • Polyethylene (PE) (for example, bread bags): 14-20
  • Polyethylene terephthalate/polyethylene (PET/PE): 3

Because creating packaging with a higher barrier sometimes increases manufacturers costs, the good package for you is the one that protects your specific product under conditions it will face for the time required. The end goal, of course, is that in every package that is purchased and opened, a consumer finds a fresh and tasty product that says the best about your brand.

Finding your bag's design

When you work with Carepac on packaging (or repackaging) your product, our graphics design team and manufacturers are experts and begin by understanding your business, what your product says about your brand, how it is prepared for packaging, how it is best shipped and stored, and for what period of time it should be able to remain fresh at the point of purchase. Part of that process for consumable products is testing them inside bags of different materials and manufacturing. That should direct the  selection of materials used with the required barrier properties but not redundantly high, which increases your budget. When there is a selection of comparable quality materials and designs, then budget considerations (and possibly your manufacturing deadline) become paramount.

At the same time, the Carepac teams addresses every aspect of your packaging, such as the shape for different types of display and the crucial decision on appearance of the label. We make sure your food packaging is set in top notch condition in front of your customers.  That is because the package and its appealing graphics are the prime point-of-purchase marketing features to close the sale. And naturally, your product's reputation with consumers for freshness is indispensable for repeat sales and word-of-mouth advertising.

Starting your Supply Chain

Your first step is as easy as visiting our website for information for your business about every phase of creating packaging that protects the product, helps to sell it at the top point of sale, and fits your budget. Our online estimator can give you an instant price estimate for your bag as you now conceive it. The choices you will make in consultation with us are explained in the relevant sections of the site, with many examples to clarify your choice for your supply chain and give you a picture of what your product will look like in the store—be it brick-and-mortar or online.

When you are ready to discuss a specific order, which can begin with a planning and design session with our range of experts, just get in touch with us. And check back here to see our regular blogs where you can do some reading about challenges, opportunities, and solutions in packaging market.

You can visit us daily on Twitter for information, insights, and updates on what we are discussing with our customers.

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Eco Friendly Packaging

The Pros and Cons of Eco Friendly Packaging and Why It Pays to Make the Switch

Packaging can have a great design while being biodegradable, socially responsible and eco friendly.

When someone first has an idea for a business, the last thing they are thinking about is 

packaging, let alone eco friendly packaging, but it shouldn't be. In the world of E-Commerce, the package that a product comes in says much about your brand and it has a huge impact since it's the first impression a customer has when they first touch it. 

While you can't control what a shipping company does with it, the condition, overall appearance, and protection provided, all play a factor consciously or subconsciously in how a consumer thinks. 

Imagine it like getting a birthday present: the mailer comes with several boxes, but you noticed one of them is wrapped in colorful paper with a beautiful bow on the top. You instantly get excited and curious just because of the look of it. Even if the contents were the same, this is a way better present than receive one within a cardboard box.

When you think about it in those terms, choosing the kind 

of packages you use isn't so cut and dry, especially depending on your industry and the 

types of consumers you attract. 

Packaging Follows Market Trends and Customers Needs

Traditional bags made from plastic barrier may be working now, but public 

perception is changing, people are beginning to care more about sustainability, rethinking their personal habits, and companies must weigh their options and find a green and biodegradable packing solution that's both sustainable and works for them. 

Why Plastic Packaging is not Biodegradable?

The question may have crossed your mind why all plastic aren't recyclable or biodegradable, considering they are made from a carbon-based material. The easy 

answer is that they technically are; it is just that their manufacturing process makes it 

sometimes take hundreds of years for that process to take place. The primary reason 

that traditional barrier bags are not recyclable is that to improve performance, the bags 

are made from a lamination of different materials, and the glue removal process makes 

it economically unfeasible to recycle also, as most consumer packaging is not cleaned 

before being recycled, so recycling companies usually throw all of it out.  

Seeking New Packaging Solutions

Whether it is part of your corporate social responsibility efforts or simply trying to appeal 

to environmentally savvy consumers, you wonder if green and sustainable packaging is a viable 

option for your company. By comparing traditional packaging and packages made from sustainable options in 

the same space, you should have the right information to weigh your options and come to a conclusion 

that is right for your business.  

Traditional packaging has high barrier and is very durable. On the other hand, it has a high ecological impact being non renewable and non recyclable.

Pros and Cons of Traditional Packaging Materials

If it's not broken, some would say don't fix it, and these traditional plastic barrier bags have 

been working for decades, so why change now? The world is getting much more Earth-conscious, leading consumers that care are seeking to do their part to conserve the planet. These pros and cons of traditional barrier bags shed some light on what made them so popular for so long and why they may no longer be the best option. 



These plastic bags have been used for years and have been proven time and time again to work. 

They are more widely available because of their track record and their cost-efficiency.  


Traditional plastic bags are a cost-efficient way to protect your product during shipping, especially if you are shipping a lot 

of volume.  


Traditional plastic became the most popular packaging because they are flexible and lightweight but incredibly durable at the same time.  

High Barrier Packaging

High barrier bags preserve products longer because there is a low transfer of oxygen between the inside and outside of the bag. Moisture transfer is also mitigated, and both can be mitigated further by adding oxygen and moisture absorbers to the bag. A high barrier doesn't only mean preventing liquid and gas transfer; it also means high tensile strength, which prevents tears and punctures.  


 Uses non-renewables 

Traditional plastic barrier bags are made from a non-renewable source, which means that every bag made uses more 

Not Recyclable or Compostable Product

Since plastic is not recyclable or biodegradable, each bag creates waste that takes hundreds of years to break down, causing a massive environmental impact.

Public Perception

As consumers become more interested in conservation matters, using traditional plastic barrier bags may give customers a negative perception of brands that are using these materials.

Despite having less barrier, being less durable and more expensive, eco friendly packaging compensate these issues  being compostable, sustainable, helping reduce ocean pollution.

Pros and Cons of Sustainable Packaging and Eco Friendly Materials


Public Perception

Businesses willing to spend a little more on sustainability and eco-friendly packaging will be viewed as socially responsible and likely have a better public perception. Customers that care about the environment have shown a strong interest in reducing the impact of their purchases. Sustainable packaging such as recyclable and biodegradable packaging improve consumers impression of your brand. 

Enhanced Regulatory compliance

The EU, Canada and other nations have already started to move towards a more sustainable packaging future. They are in the process of enacting taxes on packaging which is not eco-friendly. "[T]he EU is moving to slap a tax on non-recycled plastic packaging in the new year." 

Reduce Ocean Pollution from plastic products

Bags made from plastic and plastic waste are major contributors to ocean garbage. While recycling is a advantage, the process of recycling requires energy. The real future of packaging is biodegradable bags that will biodegrade either through industrial processes or in a land fill. Informed customers will love the fact that their bags can be composted. 


More expensive

Unfortunately, as is usually the case, using renewable resources, the materials used are more costly, so the price point of eco-friendly bags is higher in comparison to bags made from traditional plastic bags.

Less Barrier Packaging

While the technology continues to improve currently eco-friendly packaging like compostable and recyclable bags have a lower barrier from moisture and oxygen, which means a shorter shelf-life for packaged products. This can be mitigated with oxygen and moisture-absorbing additives and new coatings are being developed, currently if you need a high barrier packaging solution eco-friendly will not be as effective. 

Less Durable

This packaging has less tensile strength, so it is not as immune to punctures and tears as traditional barrier bags. Common uses that need high tensile strength including protein powder, flours, and other granulated products. Also any product which is heavy, needs extra strength. 

Some Eco Friendly Packaging Printing Limitations

The materials used for less expensive compostable barrier bags require printed materials to be printed directly onto the paper, limiting the design and colors one can use. Higher-end biodegradable packages do not have these same limitations.

Degassing Valve 2 The Pros and Cons of Eco Friendly Packaging and Why It Pays to Make the Switch

Pros and Cons of Sustainable Recyclable Packaging

Many of the advantages and disadvantages of recyclable bags are the same as compostable bags, with a few added considerations.


Because the materials are recyclable, these products are said to be less expensive than compostable bags.

bag11 DSC00257 scaled e1624026902319 The Pros and Cons of Eco Friendly Packaging and Why It Pays to Make the Switch


Recyclable barrier bags look more like traditional barrier bags, so recycling facilities will often remove them from the recycling, and throw them away because they don't have the time or reason to check bags for a recyclable stamp.

Make the Switch to a more Eco Friendly Packaging

The extra upfront cost of choosing eco-friendly barrier bags can lead to higher sales and more profit in the long run. Thanks to their advantages, customers will love businesses that choose a socially responsible route for packaging your products. And some disadvantages to these products, like the fact that customers may not know that they are biodegradable or recyclable, can easily be rectified with a environmentally green design and information on the label about proper disposal and subtly notifying them that you have decided to be a more eco-conscious company. If you are ready to make the switch to sustainability, eco-friendly packages and get all the benefits that come with it, or if you have any other questions about the product or ordering, contact us today!

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flexible packaging

Everything You Need Know About Flexible Barrier Packaging

bag11 DSC00257 scaled e1624026902319 Everything You Need Know About Flexible Barrier Packaging

Product packaging does more than just protect your products; it also says a lot about your brand. Keep in mind that this is the first interaction that customers have with your products, and if your labels don't make a good first impression, you'll probably lose them!

Consumer behavior has significantly changed, and they no longer engage with a brand in the stores before buying. Studies also show that customers only take about 20 seconds to decide whether or not they'll pick a product. Make this time count!

You may have a good product, but your customers don't know that. The only way you can pull them in is through unique and quality packaging. Here's where flexible barrier comes into play, specially at the food packaging industry. Check out our ultimate guide to barrier packaging below.

What Is Flexible Barrier Packaging?

You certainly have seen this food service packaging material everywhere!

Flexible barrier packaging is a part of modified atmosphere packaging (MAP). This is any packaging that modifies the atmosphere inside itself to preserve the goods.

A classic example would be canning, which started in wine bottles and was taken from watching monks make champagne. They began with a pasteurization process followed by maintaining a modified atmosphere in the jar to stop the champagne from going bad. Aluminum cans were the next invention and had a wide adoption rate. They are, however, being phased out and replaced by flexible barrier packages.

Flexible barrier packaging was born out of the space race as NASA looked for ways to cut out weight and maintain freshness. Some of the earliest products to use this packaging were MREs. As the name implies, the key difference between plastic bags and barrier packaging is the barrier.

Plastic bags do not have an enhanced barrier which is often made from combinations of plastic films laminated together for increased strength.

What Are the Most Common Used Materials?

Well known as food packaging resources but these films have nearly endless applications!

Due to the advancement of packaging technology, there are several flexible barrier films for you to choose from;


Polyesters (PET)

Polyester is highly preferred because it is effective and affordable. It's made from quality film that's perfect for packaging applications such as machine parts, food, or bags with view windows. Polyester also has a great weight to strength ratio and comes with its own barrier.

Its dimension stability is impressive and is usually heat and tear-resistant.


Metalized Barrier METPET / VMPET

Aluminum foil is often costly, so a metalized barrier was created as an affordable solution. They are made from coating polyester with a metalized vapor or thin metallic film to fortify the barrier and make the packaging surface reflective.

Nickel and Chromium are also options, but aluminum is the preferred metal for this type of barrier, used for multiple food packaging applications and even medical device packaging.


Aluminum Foil (AL) Combined with PET, MOPP, and PE

This type of flexible barrier packaging is used when maximum shelf life or barrier is required. When employed as part of a barrier lamination structure, Aluminum foil creates what is, in essence a flexible "aluminum can". Aluminum has a very high barrier to moisture and oxygen transmission which can be as low as .0006 grams/24h. This is a extremely low migration rate which creates an amazing barrier. 


Nylon Laminations and Co-extrusions

Nylon laminations usually combine polyester or foil with nylon to enhance barrier strength, and bag strength so the bag does not break or rip. The lamination process is usually different depending on the product requirement. Nylon Co-extrusions are mainly used for vacuuming. Due to the co-extrusion, the film is able to stretch without breaking and conform to the shape of your products when vacuumed around them.



OPP, BOPP, MOPP, CPP are common barrier films which offer different performance characteristics than PET, PE, or a Metalized material. First OPP is generally lower in cost, and also can be used to create a matte lamination, making the bag matte. Last but not least Polypropylene when used as a cast material has a higher melting point than other plastic films commonly used for interior liners. This makes it possible to create bags that both heat seal but which can be exposed to temperatures above 100C for sterilization or boiling. 


Polyethylene (LDPE, PE, LLDPE)

Polyethylene by itself is a weak barrier, even when used in high build or mil thicknesses. But when combined with other plastic films, Polyethylene helps bring it all together. PE is predominately used as the interior food safe and heat sealable layer, PE promotes elasticity and has a natural "stretch" to it. Polyethylene is non-reactive to most chemicals, and can withstand high acids and bases. 

Factors to Consider When Deciding the Packaging Material to Use

 Vapor and oxygen barrier packaging, tensile strength, UV light protection - there is a lot to consider at keeping your products safe and reducing food waste.

The type of flexible barrier packaging you choose ultimately depends on the product being packaged. Is it a fresh consumable? Does it have to be stored for extended periods of time? Do you want customers to view the product? Is is sensitive to oxygen? While other factors are still important, the product requirements still remain the key determining factor.

Other aspects you should consider while searching for food packaging resources include:

Degassing Valve 2 Everything You Need Know About Flexible Barrier Packaging

Estimated Product Shelf Life

If your products have a low shelf life, you should go for low or medium-barrier plastic film. This is because such products are usually low-value retail items that are consumed quickly, so your primary focus should be on economic packaging.

For products with a longer shelf life, high-barrier materials are the best option for packaging reducing food loss and waste of other products. They are very stable and will keep your products fresh for a long time.

MVTR and Moisture Barrier Illustration Everything You Need Know About Flexible Barrier Packaging

Sensitivity to Moisture

Some products like nutritional mixes and dry food ingredients are extremely sensitive to moisture and should be packaged in enhanced barrier plastic films. This includes high-density polyethylene and foil laminations that are effective in preventing moisture from getting into the bag.

Sensitivity to Oxygen

Products like chips change their taste and texture when exposed to oxygen and should be packaged in oxygen barrier packaging materials. They prevent oxygen transmissions inside the bag and extend the shelf life of your product.

Physical Capacity

The flexible barrier material used should be strong enough to hold your products. You should conduct a physical test to determine how well the packaging can protect your product against external elements such as light, dust, heat, and air.


The packaging material used should be easy to restock within short time frames after you place your order. Any delays in sourcing the packaging materials could also impact the production process and, ultimately, your sales. Enough reasons to make sure you have reliable supplier that provide automated packaging solutions.

Other factors you should consider include;

  • Durability: the flexible barrier material should remain in good condition for long periods of time to maintain product freshness while reducing food waste.
  • Price: you should go for a barrier packaging material that strikes the ideal balance between the set budget and your desired properties.
  • Fitness of purpose: the properties of the material should be enough to serve your packaging needs.

Flexible Barrier Is the Way to Go!

We provide quality food service packaging that will make your business thrive.

Product packaging strongly influences a customer's buying decision. Studies have shown that consumers make over 70% of all buying decisions at the point of purchase, and the main aspect that determines whether they pick your product or walk away is your packaging.

Flexible barrier packaging comes in many forms and can be customized to meet your audience's needs. From medical device packaging to food service packaging, from cosmetics to alcoholic beverages - it is compatible with a wide range of products making it the go-to packaging solution for many manufacturers.

If you're not sure which packaging solutions your products need, we'd love to help you. Contact us today and get a 5% Price Match Guarantee.

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coffee bags packaging

What to Look For in a Coffee Bag

Coffee Bags

    Coffee roasters will tell you that maintaining the freshness of their coffee beans is essential. As a specialty coffee manufacturer, you want coffee packaging that keeps your beans smelling and tasting as fresh as the day you first roasted them. Fancy-looking packaging will only get you so far. High-quality coffee packaging has two jobs. One is to make sure your specialty coffee beans retain all the freshness and flavor you work so hard to create during the roasting process. The other is to make your brand recognizable, so customers keep coming back for more. You can even make the argument that your packaging is almost as important as roasting the beans. 

    It's important to know what to consider in a coffee bag, and you want to work with a company that asks the right questions. How do you fill your bags? What is the scale of your business? What type of audience do you serve? Do you sell to companies or end-users? Here are some tips to consider when you trying to find the best kind of coffee bags for your business.

The Perfect Pouch for Coffee Packaging

A good pouch or bag for your roasted coffee beans has several benefits over the traditional coffee can. Bags and pouches are lightweight and pack well into shipping containers and other equipment, yet they also stand upright on a retail shelf. CarePac features several different style bags to choose from.

Side Gusseted Pouch

This machine made side gusset pouch is a stylish design that holds its shape well while supporting more weight than most types of coffee bags. Works well with supporting features such as an EZ-Pull closure, making the bag easy to open and close for future use. A convenience factor that customers love!

Quad Seal What to Look For in a Coffee Bag

Quad Seal Coffee Bag

Another gusseted pouch, but this time all four corners include a nice and tight seal. This offers a clean, square look that is very popular in coffee packaging as it gives you extra room for design and branding. Pair a quad seal bag with a recloseable zipper, and you have a real winner.

8 Seal Square Bottom What to Look For in a Coffee Bag

8-Seal Square Bottom Coffee Bag

Another gusseted pouch, but this time all four corners are sealed nice and tight. This offers a clean, square look that is very popular in coffee packaging as it gives you extra room for design and branding. If you're a specialty coffee brand, this is a style you'll want to look into. Pair a quad seal bag with a recloseable zipper, and you have a real winner.

Stand Up Pouch black What to Look For in a Coffee Bag

Stand Up Pouches

Stand Up Pouches Highly economical, stand-up pouches are considered more of a "new school" design and offer several benefits over other types of bags. It stands up nicely on a shelf and displays clean lines while presenting a familiar shape to consumers. It also allows for the use of an insert zipper, which is excellent for the customer to ensure freshness and means it's easier for the manufacturer to fill.

Flexible Barrier Packaging Keeps Coffee Fresh, Like It Should Be

     Whether you specialize in ground coffee or freshly roasted beans, your customer wants it fresh and flavorful, regardless of the roasting notes. Specialty coffee beans are highly susceptible to oxygen, UV, and other environmental factors making airtight packaging essential to the integrity of your beans. Flexible packaging also requires a barrier. You can usually choose between a genuine aluminum barrier or go with a more environmentally friendly high-barrier polyester.

     Aluminum has been used for a long time to keep foods fresh. Our CareFoil line of flexible barrier packaging materials is top-notch. We offer several variations, but all of them provide the ultimate barrier protection of aluminum with the added strength of Mylar. It's an excellent barrier to both oxygen and moisture. Suppose your audience prefers a more natural look. In that case, our CareKraft barrier materials provide superior barrier protection in a kraft paper exterior look and feel. CareKraft nags are made with encapsulated foil, or high-strength nylon reinforced laminated coating.

     You also want to make sure your product is protected from UV light. UV light can sap the potency right out of your beans, leaving them pale and not tasting that great. Choose an opaque bag that effectively blocks your product from all UV rays. As you can see, there are many choices here and a lot to think about. But don't worry, you don't have to know what's best for your particular product. Our packaging specialists will help you choose the perfect films for what you need.

Include a Degassing Valve

Degassing Valve 2 What to Look For in a Coffee Bag

After coffee beans are roasted, they continue to emit gases for quite a while. Suppose you package your beans before all the gasses have dissipated. In that case, the gas will be trapped inside the package, causing it to look misshapen and bloated. Not only is this unsightly, but it can also cause the bag to burst open during transport. Adding a degassing valve to your coffee bag takes care of this problem.

A degassing valve is a one-way valve that allows gas to escape from the bag while not allowing any gas in. It maximizes the freshness of your coffee by allowing unwanted gas to escape while keeping oxygen from entering into the bag's environment. Oxygen degrades coffee beans, turning them stale and significantly affecting the flavor. Adding a degassing valve not only locks in the taste of your beans, it greatly adds to the shelf-life of your product.

     Also, consider that using a degassing valve can increase your productivity and efficiency. Instead of waiting for your freshly roasted beans to finish emitting gases, you can now package them right away. Any natural gases produced during roasting will escape via the one-way valve.

Closures & Seals

Normal Zipper


Pull Tab Zipper


Tin Ties What to Look For in a Coffee Bag


     Anyone serious about keeping their coffee tasting great knows that you don't keep your beans in the refrigerator or freezer. What you want is to provide packaging that allows your customers to reuse the original pouch the coffee came in. We already know that coffee should be kept in an airtight bag. But as soon as someone opens the package, it's no longer airtight! That's where a reclosable zipper or a tin-tie comes in. You want your customer to take out the amount of coffee they need and then close the bag up tight to keep it fresh.

     Plus, if you have invested in artwork and branding on your packaging, the last thing you want is for your customer to remove the beans and put them in a different container. You want your customer to think of your company each time they make a cup of joe. Adding a reclosable feature is almost a necessity to work toward increased brand loyalty.

Design a Custom Look for your Coffee Bag

Coffee Bags

     Since we're talking about customer loyalty, marketing, and branding, it's important to remember that grocery stores continually reconfigure their shelving. If your product winds up below or above eye level, you could lose your competitive edge at any time. Small coffee roasters have become more numerous in recent years, which means less shelf space for everyone. Another challenge is that coffee buyers are more concerned with how much a bag of coffee costs as opposed to how much coffee is inside. 

Your 16oz bag of specialty coffee looks more expensive than that 12oz bag, even if your brand is less money per ounce. Your customer is more apt to grab the cheaper bag even though it's costing them more money. We know how to configure your coffee packaging to make it perfect for your product. We'll look at the size of your bag, how your branding is printed, and where it might be sitting on the shelf, so you get the most bang for your buck.

Do Right By Your Coffee Shop or Coffee Business

     Choosing the right specialty coffee bag means protecting your coffee from air, moisture, light, and heat, which helps to ensure that it is always tasting great. It means knowing the right questions to ask so your packaging comes out just the way you want it. We specialize in working with small-to-medium-size coffee businesses to get them noticed. If you run a coffee shop and want to learn how to create your own coffee business with our packaging, contact us. We can't wait to work with you!

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rsz untitled design 44 How Much Do Custom Printed Stand Up Pouches Cost?

How Much Do Custom Printed Stand Up Pouches Cost?

Custom printed mylar bags and stand up pouches costs can vary significantly based on the material, features, and size of your bag, as well as the printing method you use and the lead time you choose. Let’s break down all the variables that go into the cost of a stand up pouch.

1. The Size of Your Stand Up Pouch

It seems fairly obvious that the larger the stand up bag the more raw materials are needed to produce the bag, therefore the cost increases as the size of the bag increases. But what you might not know is that you can save money by choosing a standard stand up pouch size, versus a custom size. 

For example, if you are starting out, and don’t have strict requirements, your product may be able to fit a standard size bag, versus trying to get an exact match on the dimensions desired for your bag.

rsz silver all together How Much Do Custom Printed Stand Up Pouches Cost?

2. How Many Designs You Have

First, let’s clarify what we mean by design. You may have one product, like coffee bags, but have multiple designs because you sell different variations and flavors of coffee. Maybe you sell decaf whole beans, and ground dark roast coffee. Typically each SKU will have it’s own design. The more designs you have, the higher the cost of the bags because the printers used to create your bags will have to be “reset” for each design. 

If you are new to packaging you might be wondering how many designs do I need? You don’t really need to have a lot of designs if you are just starting out. One “trick” is to use one design and then add a small sticker to the package to delineate different flavors for example. 

3. How Many Bags You Need

This is also quite obvious. The more bags you need, the higher the total price of your order will be. But let’s talk about the nuance here. What if you only need 5,000 bags right now to fulfill an order, or to get your business started, BUT you could get a quantity discount if you were able to buy more bags now. 

Of course, adding on more bags will increase the total price, but you also need to consider UNIT PRICE. If you are able to get 5,000 bags for $1,000 and 7,500 bags for $1,100, the unit price becomes 20 cents per bag and 14.6 cents per bag, respectively.

If you are launching a new product, or perhaps a new company, you will have less direct experience with how your product will sell. Ordering might become a trade-off between the quantity discount and your concerns about using all the bags you order.

If you aren’t sure what’s best for your company, contact our friendly packaging experts for a free consultation

4. What Material & Features You Choose

We’ve all come to expect that organic food costs more than conventionally grown foods. We can understand the additional costs required to generate a successful crop when you are not using conventional approaches. 

It’s the same thing for stand up pouches. The materials and features you choose for your stand up pouch will affect the total cost. For example, Compostable packaging material is more expensive than traditional mylar packaging. 

Additionally the thickness of your material can drive up cost. For example, chips are typically packaged in low barrier bags because they are low margin items that move off store shelves very quickly. But if you are packaging a dog treat that might sit on the shelf for four months before someone purchases it, then you need a higher barrier material.

Common CareClear Polyester Laminations

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Common CareClear-B Polyester Laminations

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CareSilver Metalized Barrier

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CareFoil Material Codes

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CareKraft Barrier Film Selections

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Mylar Barrier Film Selections

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Lastly, the features you choose can impact the price of your bags. If you want child resistant zippers that will cost more than a simple zipper. There are seven different types of zippers, all of different purposes, that can all affect the price of your bag.

Wide Flange Zipper How Much Do Custom Printed Stand Up Pouches Cost?
Powder zipper How Much Do Custom Printed Stand Up Pouches Cost?
Pull Tab How Much Do Custom Printed Stand Up Pouches Cost?
Heavy Duty How Much Do Custom Printed Stand Up Pouches Cost?
Standard Zipper How Much Do Custom Printed Stand Up Pouches Cost?

5. How Soon You Need Your Bags

You know those shipping options you have to choose from when ordering your favorite products online? Next Day Shipping is always going to cost you the most because a lot more planning and careful execution must occur to ensure your package arrives on your doorstep when you expect it.

In the packaging industry, we refer to “how soon do you need it” as Lead Time. As with anything that is custom made, it takes time to print your bag. The more of a rush job, the more you can expect to pay because the production schedule will have to be altered to fit in your urgent need. And those changes cost money. 

Alternatively if you are a planner you can save money by choosing the longest lead time, knowing your bags will arrive on time. If you call your packaging manufacturer the day before you run out of bags, expect to hand over a pretty penny to get those bags printed, and shipped to you. 

At CarePac we use manufacturers in the United States. This allows us to control lead times, shipping costs, and reliable delivery. If you are new to packaging we suggest avoiding all the pitfalls of ordering from China because you will likely be hit by unexpected delays through customs (even if you were promised a short lead time), high shipping costs and additional taxes you hadn’t planned for. 

6. Printing Method

This is by far the least understood aspect of packaging cost. And there isn’t one method that is better than the other. In fact, unless you are in the packaging business you wouldn’t be able to tell which bag is plated printed and which bag is digital printed. 

The process of printing is the difference. Digital printing is the process of printing digital-based images directly onto your package. Plate printing uses a thin aluminum plate to transfer your design onto the pouch. With plate printing, artwork is separated into four ink colors: cyan, magenta, yellow and black (CMYK) — EACH COLOR REQUIRES A PLATE.

Get an Instant Estimate for a Custom Printed Stand Up Pouch

No matter how crucial this product launch is to your company, you do have a budget. Whether you’re a start up, bringing a new product to market, or restocking an existing product, you want the best bang for your buck.  

CarePac is happy to discuss material types, printing options, and additional features that will help you decide what bags are best for you. You’ll receive great bags while staying on target!



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Get an Instant Estimate for a Custom Printed Stand Up Pouch

No matter how crucial this product launch is to your company, you do have a budget. Whether you’re a start up, bringing a new product to market, or restocking an existing product, you want the best bang for your buck.  

CarePac is happy to discuss material types, printing options, and additional features that will help you decide what bags are best for you. You’ll receive great bags while staying on target!

We will match any competitor's price within 5%, guaranteed. That means you don’t have to settle for an inferior product just to save money.

You can have the BEST stand-up pouches on the market - along with our legendary customer service - for practically the same price!

5% Price Match Guarantee

Now You Really CAN Have The Highest Quality at the Best Price
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rsz untitled design 24 e1626105181655 How to Pick the Right Stand Up Pouch for Your Business

How to Pick the Right Stand Up Pouch for Your Business


3 Steps to Choosing the Right Stand Up Pouch



Step 1: Determine the Right Size for Your Stand Up Pouch


One of the biggest mistakes people make when selecting their first stand up pouch is that they misjudge the size needed. Volume is important when selecting the right sized pouch. For example, fine grain salt takes up less volume than whole coffee beans.


We have unfortunately witnessed colossal fails when a customer ordered a bag that they thought would work for popcorn, only to realize it’s a pouch for popcorn kernels instead of fully popped corn. Wah wah! <img draggable=” />


The Basics of Stand Up Pouch Sizing


Let’s review the basics of pouch sizing. The dimensions of a stand up pouch are always listed in the following order: width, height and a gusset. If a pouch doesn’t have a gusset listed, it’s not a stand up pouch. It is a 2-seal or 3-seal pouch, which is different, as these pouches do not stand up on the shelf.


Next, pouch dimensions are always based on the outside of the bag as shown in the diagram below. You must remember that there is a seam that holds the bag together so you can’t assume that your product will fit inside without testing it. 


And finally you need to make sure you account for the space required for the zipper, tear notch, or hang hole if you are considering one for your stand up pouch. The fillable area of the bag is defined as the area below the zipper. It’s important to remember that this area is included in the dimensions of the bag but NOT part of the fillable area. So as they saw, Measure Twice, Cut Once!


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Start by Ordering Samples of Different Sized Pouches


If you want to choose the right size stand up pouch, start by ordering samples so you can actually put your product in the pouch. If your pouch is too full it will burst at the seams and you’ll experience a bag blowout.  If you have a lot of extra room you may be paying for more bag than you need, AND your customers may be disappointed when they see how little product is in the bag.That’s why we offer 100% custom sized pouches


You’ll also need to be aware of how much extra space you need to leave in the bag for natural expansion or gases that may be released during transport or while sitting on a store shelf. For packages that release gas you might want to consider a de-gassing valve


What Size of Stand Up Pouch Do I Need? 


Now that you know how the dimensions of a stand up pouch work, let’s figure out how much product will fit in various sized pouches. The table below shows how much water (or liquid) will fit in a specific sized pouch. You can also see that 1oz (28g) of cannabis will require a stand up pouch that measures 6x9x3.5 versus a 1/4oz (7g) of cannabis only requires a stand up pouch that measures 3.5×4.5. 



Before you order your product packaging in bulk, be sure to pack different product sizes in sample pouches until you are sure which ones fit best. You can order the sample sizes from mini, small, medium, large, to extra-large free, for this reason.


Step 2: Choose the Right Material for Your Stand Up Pouch


Most stand up pouches are made from metalized mylar. However, depending on what you are packaging, you can try clear, silver, foil, or kraft materials. Carepac even recyclable, compostable, or even biodegradable stand up pouches.


So how do you choose the right material? 

  1. Consider how long your product is going to be in the package 
  2. Consider the required shelf life
  3. Think about how important freshness is to your product and brand image.


For example, think about corn chips versus dried apples. Corn chips are usually packaged in economical medium to low barrier materials because most of us eat our chips quickly after purchasing them. Nobody expects chips to have an extensive shelf life and chips are a low margin item that requires a reasonably priced packaging solution.


Check out our handy chart that identifies what type of materials work best for what types of packaging. 


The material of the pouch you order will also factor into  the price of the packaging. If you wish to have a packaging bag with a clear window, it may also narrow the list of materials from which you can choose.


If you are new to packaging we recommend you chat with one of our packaging experts. We offer free consulting to ensure you pick the right bag for your needs. 

Step 3: Selecting Your Stand Up Pouch Features


Choosing the features on your bag is the fun part. You get to imagine how your customer will use your bag. 


The Versatile Hang Hole


Will they grab your bag off a peg rack at the local convenience store? If so, you need a hang hole. But don’t assume hang holes are only for low priced items. Think about the way candy or nuts are organized near the checkout in your favorite grocery store. They likely use a hang hole as well to make it easy to grab n’ go. Hang holes are the hardest working feature on a pouch so even if you expect your pouch to stand up on the shelf think about any possible retailer environments where your pouch may end up hanging.



The Resealable Zipper


Did you know there are more than six different types of of zippers that can be used on your pouch. It all depends on what you are putting in your pouch. For example, if you are packaging matcha green tea, you need a powder zipper because otherwise your bag will have trouble resealing and customers may spill an expensive product and never buy your product again due to the packaging “error.”



The Child Resistant Pouch


If you are packaging cannabis you may be required to use a child resistant zipper (it varies by state). But any product that is potentially dangerous to children really should be child resistant. This could be supplement pouches, or fertilizer bags, or detergent pods for example. 


Child resistant pouches are also smell proof and designed to be opaque so children cannot view inside the bag. If you are new to packaging and unsure what type of child resistant packaging you need be sure to reach out to our friendly packaging experts for a free consultation.



Get an Instant Estimate


There is a lot to discover about stand up pouches if you have never used them before. Your budget will also determine the style and the configuration of the pouches you choose. Visit CarePac today to get an instant online estimate and discover more on the benefits and configuration of stand up pouches and take advantage of their low minimum orders, free samples, and exceptional customer service.


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