Packaging is an art, science and technology all rolled into one. The science is measuring, estimating and controlling variables such as production volume, type of product, size, cost, shelf life, environmental conditions and so on. The art consists in the selection of the best materials, methods of packaging and their combinations. Packaging therefore refers to the entire process of developing, designing, testing, evaluating and making packaging systems that are able to satisfy the requirements of clients.
Packaging therefore requires a systematic approach. In most cases, packaging is done according to the three primary packaging principles. These include the physical arrangement of the material and product, the chemical composition and physical characteristics of the product, and the purpose of packaging. The physical arrangement of the material and the product should comply with the packaging principle. The chemical composition and physical characteristics of the product must meet the purpose of packaging principle.
The third principal of packaging is to provide protection to the product from damage during shipping. Different packaging materials provide different levels of protection. For example, a foam commercial mailing box provides greater protection than a particleboard shipping box. However, all packaging can not provide an equivalent level of protection to the product against shipping damage.
The different types of packaging used for different purposes and applications can be grouped into four main categories namely: primary packaging, secondary packaging, specialty packaging and non-packaging packaging. Primary packaging refers to boxes and bags used for single purposes such as the wrapping of fragile or perishable goods, household goods, etc. Generally, these boxes and bags came in standard sizes and shapes. Secondary packaging is used for the transportation of non-standard sized and oddly shaped goods.
Specialty packaging includes pouches, transducers, blister packs, bin liners, vacuum tubes, airtight packaging and the like. Non-specialty packaging includes foam inserts, polystyrene, polypropylene, polystyrene sheets, bubble wraps, corrugated paperboard and the like. On the other hand, there are certain advantages of using the best material available in the market, which has increased its popularity. Firstly, flexible packaging is advantageous because of its capability to stretch very thin and narrow dimensions. This enables manufacturers and marketers to package different types of products.
Another advantage of using these flexible packaging materials is that they can easily adapt to the changing customer needs. They also make the delivery of goods fast and easy. Also, because they come in various shapes and sizes, they can easily meet the increasing demands of customers. The packaging solutions and other packaging materials for the food industry can be purchased from online suppliers at highly competitive prices. Thus, by choosing the right packaging materials, one can improve his/her business profitability.