Used across a wide range of industries and applications, packaging is available in many different materials to suit specific needs – keeping pharmaceuticals sterile, ensuring consumer products are shipped safely, and allowing for the safe transport of hazardous materials, to name just a few.
Whether it is utilized for shipping, storage, or protective purposes, packaging plays a crucial role in industry today.
Some of the most common types of packaging include:
Paper & Paperboard Packaging
Read more about these below.
Used to store and transport liquids, bag-in-box (BIB) packaging is typically comprised of a plastic bag, referred to as a bladder, contained inside a Corrugated Box. The bag, usually made of several layers of metalized film or other plastic materials, is very strong, helping to ensure that the liquid does not leak. Common applications include boxed wine, juice, and other beverages.
The most common type of transport packaging, corrugated packaging is made from corrugated fiberboard, which is comprised of a fluted - or rippled - cardboard sheet, along with one or two flat linerboards. Corrugated packaging is used for a huge range of applications, such as food packaging, shipping, and transportation. The fluting on corrugated packaging sets it apart from paperboard packaging.
Foam packaging is ideal for protecting fragile or sensitive items during transportation and shipping, allowing businesses to reduce damage-related expenses. Lightweight, affordable, and flexible, this type of packaging comes in various styles and sizes. Common types include anti-static foam packaging, often used for automotive and electronics applications, and polyurethane (PU) foam packaging, which can be easily molded into different shapes.
Foil packaging forms a reliable barrier against moisture, oxygen, light, and bacteria. This makes foil packaging ideal for perishable goods, as well as pharmaceutical applications. Foil can also be combined with flexible films to create lightweight packages that expand during the production process and contract when the actual product is being used or consumed.
Impermeable and nonporous, glass packaging is ideal for maintaining freshness, nutrition, and taste, making it a go-to choice for food and beverage applications. Reusable and 100% recyclable, glass packaging is also frequently used in pharmaceutical, medical, and personal care and cosmetics applications.
Paper & Paperboard Packaging
Paper and paperboard packaging is made by combining additives and cellulose fibers from trees, creating a thick, matted web of material. In many countries, there are laws are in place that require this type of packaging to be made at least partially from recycled materials. Although [paper" and [paperboard" are often used interchangeably, paperboard is generally thicker and more rigid than paper.
Durable, cost-effective, and efficient to produce, plastic remains one of the most popular packaging materials. Plastic packaging is ideal for products requiring protection, such as pharmaceuticals, medical devices, and food items. In recent years, an increased focus on sustainability and environmentally friendly practices has led to higher demand for recycled and lighter-weight plastic packaging.
Made from hardwood or softwood, wood packaging includes a range of different products, such as crates, boxes, and drums. Sturdy and versatile, wood packaging can be easily reused, typically for about four to five years. This type of packaging is often utilized for food and beverage, shipping, and transportation applications.
Other Types of Packaging
Packaging is available in various materials and designed for a wide range of applications. Aside from being classified by material, packaging may be organized based on intended application - for instance, agricultural packaging, presentation packaging, chemical packaging, retail packaging, and textile packaging.
Packaging is also frequently classified based on structure, shape, or feature. Tri-fold packaging honeycomb packaging, pouch packaging, and waterproof packaging are just a few examples of this.