What are the different types of packaging materials? (2023)

Getting into the world of product packaging? If so, there are many things to consider and further education. One of the most important things to consider during this time is choosing the right type of packaging materials.

If you want to pack a product, you have to decide what kind of material you want to use. But which material should you choose? Plastic, metal, cardboard, paperboard, foil, shrink wrap, bio-plastic, boxes, clamshells, or something else?

After exploring your options, you can choose the best material(s) for your packaging needs. However, you need to know which consumables are right for your applications.

Industrial Packaging has been selling, operating and advising on packaging materials for generations. We know the entire field of packaging materials inside and out.

This article will show you some of the packaging materials currently available. We'll help you understand each option. Then you can make an informed decision about which material is suitable for your products.

We will dive into different types ofpackaging materialsunder. Each section describes in detail what the packaging material is made of and when it is best to use it.

Each type of material is linked to a more detailed article. These articles offer a deeper exploration of this particular type of material.

corrugated boxes

corrugated boxesare an integral part of the packaging industry. Corrugated boxes have been a popular packaging material for generations. They are used to pack tons of products on packaging lines worldwide.

Corrugated boxes are often purchased preformed into a traditional rectangular box shape. On the other hand, they can arrive in flat piles, in which case the boxes have to be assembled by hand.

Corrugated boxes are often used in packaging applicationsCardboard erector.Case erectors are a type of packaging machines. People use these machines to form flat cardboard into a traditional box shape. The boxes are then used to pack and ship products.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (1)

Corrugated boxes are made from (you guessed it) corrugated cardboard.

corrugated cardboardis a packaging material made of fiberboard. Generally corrugated cardboardis madefrom one orseveraltypes of fiberboard. corrugated cardboardcreatedvia a process called fluted lamination (AKA: fluting).

Corrugated cardboard is also sometimes referred to as corrugated cardboard. cardboard cantechnicalany heavy-duty paperboard based pulp material.

Items commonly packaged in corrugated boxes include electronics, DVDs, consumer products and pre-packaged foods such as cereal, chips and cookies.

Dehn foil

Dehn foilis one of the most commonly used packaging materials in the world. Companies that have a shipping department almost always use stretch wrap. They use it to enclose their products on pallets before shipping.

This is done to protect products from collapse or damage during the shipping process. stretch filmachieves this goal with what "load securing."

Simply put, cargo securing allows your cargo to be adequately secured so that it arrives safely at its destination.

(Video) Food Packaging Materials – Types and Features

Various types of stretch film material are currently available. Everyoneis madefor special applications. These film types include:

  • machine stretching
    • Cast Stretch
    • Blown stretch
    • pre-stretching
    • hay bale line
  • stretch hand
  • color stretch
  • UVI-Stretch
  • VCI-Stretch
  • Ventilated stretch
  • Reinforced stretch
  • No adhesion stretch

Each of the above film formulations is designed for specific applications. Each formulation should be used for the indicated uses indicated. Using the wrong type of stretch film can lead to insufficient load securing. Using the wrong film can lead to safety issues and poorly wrapped pallets.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (2)

stretch film isfrequentlyUsed for packing and combining multi-packs. This includes multipacks of toilet paper, paper towels and bottled water.

Looking for packaging material?We can help!

What are the different types of packaging materials? (3)

shrink wrap

shrink wrapused on millions of packaging lines in companies around the world. It is one of the most popular types of packaging materials currently available on the market. It is used to package an amazing array of products.

There are different types of shrink wrap formulations. The most common formulations are polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyethylene (PE) and polyolefin (POF). Any wordingis designedfor special applications. For example, Polyolefin is the best shrink film for food packaging.

Using the wrong shrink wrap for the wrong products can result in poor packaging. It can also lead to safety risks and machine problems.

Shrink film is used for packaging products along withshrink tunnelAndVersion geller. These are two types of packaging machines required to process shrink film on your packaging line. The product is first fed through the sealer, which places the product in a shrink-wrap pouch.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (4)

Each side of the bag is then heat sealed. The product moves along the line into the shrink tunnel (also called heat tunnel). From there, the shrink wrap bag evenly contracts around the product inside.

Shrink wrap is widely used to package board games, frozen pizza boxes, and small consumer goods.

More sustainable shrink wrap alternatives

Although only available in limited quantities at the moment,biodegradable shrink wrapAndrecycled shrink wrapArecurrently available. For those of you who value sustainability and environmental friendliness, these may be of interest to youOf.

It should be noted; These films tend to be significantly more expensive and may be difficult to acquire on a permanent basis due to supply chain issues. Some of these films may also require a minimum order quantity.

Printed shrink wrap

The two main forms ofprinted shrink wrapinclude polyolefin (or POF) shrink film and polyethylene shrink film. Polyethylene (or PE) shrink wrap is most commonly sold by shrink wrap manufacturers (aka OEMs) and is generally thicker than polyolefin wrap.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (5)

(Video) The Evolution of Packaging Materials

Printed films are essentially identical to traditional clear shrink films. But with one caveat. Unlike clear shrink film, printed film has the unique ability to print branding aesthetics and eye-catching graphics directly onto the film itself. Printed unlike clear shrink wrappolyolefin film does notrequire labels.

Printed shrink wrap is most commonly used by high volume CPG companies and offers a unique material for this type of company. It should be noted that all printed shrink films have a minimum order quantity.

As such, they typically do not perform well in low-volume applications. On average, the minimum order quantity for printed shrink wrap is around 50,000 copies. An impression is the length of film required to wrap a single bundle.

While printed shrink films are generally more expensive than traditional clear shrink films, some lightly printed films aremore affordablewhile being just as awesome as their thicker counterparts.

Shrink wrap tube

Shrink wrap tubeis a type of flat tubing material made from plastic that is rolled onto a core. Shrink wrap tubing is commonly cut into individual sheets called heat shrink tubing. These sleeves are used to pack many different typesProducts.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (6)

Shrink wrap tubing (also known as "heat seal" tubing, poly tubing, or high speed tubing) is made from several different plastic formulations. This tubing material is commonly used for packaging various types of consumer goods. This may include glass bottles, fishing rods, metal poles and other products.

Shrink wrap tubing is available in custom and standard sizes. Like printed shrink sleeves, sleeve shrink sleeves can be printed with graphics, images, typography, and other branding elements.


Primarily,Polybeutelare clear or see-through plastic bags most commonly used to package and ship certain consumer goods. Generally, poly bags are made from polyethylene, one of the most popular types of plastic packaging formulations nowadays.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (8)

Poly bags have an average thickness of 1-6 mils. However, there are unique poly bags that come in other thicknesses, both thinner and thicker. Some special plastic formulations are also available upon request. Poly bags are popular due to their slim body shape, smooth touch, reflectivity and great flexibility.

Poly bags are most commonly used in packaging applications for various consumer products including T-shirts, trade magazines, various mailers, bed sheets, pillows and many other goods.


RolltaschenArea type of transparent or printed flexible bag made from several different plastic formulations. These bags are pre-rolled onto aPlastic core and come on a roll. Each pouch has an open side for easy product insertion and an opposite perforated end that allows each pouch to be easily removed from the roll.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (9)

Roll wraps are similar to the bags you typically see hanging from a roll in the grocery store to wrap products. Although roller bags are the most popular in the e-commerce market, they are also commonly used for paper mailers and certain types of medical products.

bundle foil

Bundling film is a type of shrink film. This type of film is commonly used to form multipacks of products. Multipacks are also referred to as bundles. A multipack can contain free-standing items or sit on a platform or sheet of material.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (10)

The bundle is wrapped in shrink wrap (most commonlyLDPE) and moved through a heat tunnel. The bundle is then packed together by shrinking the film holding the bundle together. Items packaged in this way include products such as packs of water bottles or boxes of tissues.

shrink bands

Shrink Tapes (akasealing tapes) are a kindprotective packaging.These tapes are often perforated for ease of use.Shrink bands are pre-made to fit the caps of different product types. These products include bottles, jars, liquid droppers andother similar items.

(Video) Definition and Types of packaging materials | Selection criteria for packaging materials | part 1

So how is shrink tape applied?AA ring made of soft plastic is placed on the lid of the container to be closed. Next, heat is used to shrink the ring evenly around the lid. This heat can be applied by a heat gun, shrink tunnel, or steam tunnel.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (11)

Shrink wrap is like other tamper evident packaging materials. They will let the consumer know if their product hasbeen exposedto damage or manipulate. They help protect consumers from consuming unsafe products.

Shrink bands provide additional strength for sealing the product cap. This means the seal of the productis improvedwithadditionallyprotective qualities.

Flexible pouches

Flexible bags are generally made of foil or plastic (although they can be made of other materials). They are used in packaging for various applications. These applications include food and beverage packaging and industrial liquid packaging. They can be found on the shelves of supermarkets and other retail outlets.

Flexible bags have become extremely popularin recent years for food packaging. This is because most of these bags are resealable. You have alow environmental impactand are less expensive to manufacture than alternative packaging materials such as glass, paperboard, metal and paperboard.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (12)

Flexible bags arefrequentlyUsed for packaging products such as cereal, energy drinks, coffee, soup, snacks, nuts and many other types of food.

The industrial hemp market has recently introduced flexible bags. They are commonly used as packaging for cannabis andhemp productssuch as gummies, whole flower hemp and other edible products.


strappingMaterials are mainly used for bundling products and securing pallet loads during transportation and storage. When palletizing, it is often complemented with the added security ofStretchwickel.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (13)

There are different types of strapping formulations including polypropylene (PP), polyester (PET) and steel. Which applications are suitable for strapping depends on the formulation required. Typical applications for polypropylene include:

  • newspapers
  • magazines
  • Direct mailer
  • Afford
  • stair railing
  • parquet floor
  • kitchen appliances
  • Clothing
  • Essen
  • Heuballen

Cardboard packaging

Cardboard packaging is a family of packaging materials that includes three subcategories: skin, blister and clamshell packaging. These materials are used in a variety of products around the world.

From fishing lures to tools, OTC pharmaceuticals to craft supplies, the uses for these types of packaging are virtually endless. Still, each of them has their own subtle differences and uses.

Let's take a closer look at each type of cardboard packaging currently available and discover the differences and uses for each style.

skin packaging

Skin packs or "skin packs" are a form ofcarded packagingMaterials that completely envelop the product contained on a piece of skin board.A thin sheet of bothskin poly or surlyn filmcovers the product and is usually vacuum sealed to the skin panel.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (14)

Skin packaging can resemble a blister pack, but with skin packs, the film takes the shape of the product rather than being placed in a universal or standard shaped container.

Products typically sold in skin packs may include seafood, pork, poultry, bison, hand tools, hardware, and other consumer goods.

(Video) Glass as a Packaging material | Advantage & Disadvantage of Glass | Types Of glass | pharmaceutics |

packaging films for skin packaging

For skin packaging, there are two main types of plastic films used for these applications. These films include Surlyn and Skin Poly film.


Dupont™ manufactures Surlyn® skin films. They are an aesthetically pleasing, lightweight alternative to clamshells or blister packs. Surlyn® is used for vacuum packaging products on coated skinboard when extremely high clarity and strength are required. Surlyn is commonly used for food packaging.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (15)


Skin-Polyfilmis another skin film most commonly used in the formation of skin packaging. Skin Poly is used for the same applications as Surlyn. Skin Poly is used in place of Surlyn when the application requires a low density polyethylene (LDPE) plastic formulation.

For applications that require both high clarity and strength, Surlyn is a better choice as it offers both properties in a single film.

blister pack

Blister packaging is the term used to describe several types of pre-formed plastic containersblister carton padsCommonly used to package products such as chewing gum, fishing lures, and OTC drugs.

The main component of a blister pack is a thermoformed container made from different plastic formulations. A pad made of cardboard, foil or plastic is attached to the back of the container. The pad is used to seal the products within the container.

Blister packs are an excellent choice forto protect productsagainst damage, moisture and dirt over a longer period of time.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (16)

Products commonly found in blister packs include fishing tackle, arts and crafts supplies, toys, and other small consumer goods. If you have batteries around your house they are likely packaged in a well branded blister pack with a cardboard backing.


What are the different types of packaging materials? (17)

Clamshells are another type of carded packaging.Most clamshells are made of plastic. However, they are sometimes made from styrofoam, cardboard, recycled paper, or cardboard.

Clamshells are made by joining two identical "shells" together. These plastic shells are connected on one side and have locking tabs on the other side. The tabs allow for easy opening and re-closing.

Common applications for clamshell packaging include take-out items, grinders, breakfast sandwiches, salads, chicken wings and other similar items.

Are there other types of packaging materials?

The list above includes many of the most popular types of packaging materials and includes some types of packaging materials from bothflexible packaging and rigid packagingoptions. Despite the length of the list above, it still represents only a fraction of the packaging materials currently available. Some other packaging materials worth mentioning are:

While the packaging materials listed in this article only offer a selection of the most popular packaging materials, they should provide you with enough information to get an idea of ​​what type of packaging materials are best for youproduct packagingRequirements.

How to choose the right packaging materials

Now that you know the different types of packaging materials, the next step is to determine the materials that are best suited for packaging your products. Check out this companion article,Which packaging materials are the right ones for your products?It teaches you everything you need to know to select the appropriate packaging materials.

If, on the other hand, you prefer to get professional advice on choosing suitable packaging materials for your products, you should do soConsider speaking to one of our packaging experts. They will help you choose the right packaging materials and suppliers, even if that supplier is ultimately not us.

What are the different types of packaging materials? (18)

(Video) How To Select Best Packaging Material For Your Products?


How many types of packaging are there? ›

Each level of packaging serves a specific purpose. It's important to be able to distinguish among the three levels, because each is intended for different packaging scenarios.

Why do we need to know the different types of packaging materials? ›

The different types of Packaging provide a protective layer for products made from many common materials and are unique in that they provide both protection during shipping and storage, but also act as a sales and marketing tool, as well.

What is the most common packaging material? ›

Plastic. Plastic is probably the most well-known packaging material. It ranges from packing peanuts to large clamshell containers and everything in between.

How do you identify different packaging materials? ›

Lesson- 23 Identification of different packaging materials
  1. Visual Test: Fold the film several times to make number of layers. ...
  2. Tear Test: Fold the film and Tear it on the fold. ...
  3. Burning Test: ...
  4. Solubility Test: ...
  5. Determination of density: ...
  6. Melt Test: ...
  7. Water Test: ...
  8. Shrink Test:
Jul 3, 2013

What is basic packaging? ›

Basic Packaging is a manufacturer and packager of a wide range of high quality, household, healthcare and institutional cleaning products; supplying an assortment of international clients with high quality goods for use in their facilities and for re-sale.

What is the main of packaging? ›

The main purpose of primary packaging is to protect and/or preserve, contain and inform the consumer. There are various examples of primary packaging and there can sometimes be several components for one product. For example for beer, the bottle containing the liquid and the label are both classed as primary packaging.

What is the best material to use for packaging? ›

The 5 Most Protective Packing Materials to Use When Moving
  • Packing Paper. When it comes to packing materials, packing paper is one of the most affordable ways to protect your items while moving. ...
  • Bubble Cushioning. ...
  • Styrofoam Packing Peanuts. ...
  • Packing foam. ...
  • Specialty packing kits.
Apr 23, 2021

What are the five major categories of materials used for packaging? ›

5 of the Most Common Packaging Materials in the World
  • Paper/Paperboard/Fiberboard. Paperboard and fiberboard are used in both primary and secondary packaging for companies throughout the world. ...
  • HDPE/PET/Rigid Packaging. ...
  • LDP/LLDPE/Flexible Packaging. ...
  • Aluminum Packaging. ...
  • Glass/Jars.
Mar 27, 2017

What are the three 3 types of packaging? ›

There are three main types of packaging:
  • Primary. Primary packaging are the materials that come into direct contact with your product. ...
  • Secondary. The main uses of secondary packaging is for protecting a product, allowing multiple products to be bundled together and for marketing. ...
  • Tertiary.

What are the important things for packaging? ›

6 Essential Elements of Effective Packaging Design
  • Effective CPG Packaging Must Call Attention to Itself. ...
  • Your CPG Packaging Must Make the Brand and Its Purpose Clear. ...
  • Your Packaging Design Should Awaken Emotions. ...
  • Packaging Design Should Strive for “Iconic Assets.” ...
  • CPG Packaging Should Capture and Call Out Benefits.
Jul 13, 2022

What is the most important part of the packaging of the product Why? ›

The protection and preservation of your products is always the number one priority, and packaging plays the most important role in ensuring these goods arrive at their final stop in perfect condition.

What is packaging and its types? ›

There are three major types of paper packaging: corrugated boxes, boxboard or paperboard cartons, and paper bags and sacks. Corrugated Boxes: Corrugated boxes are commonly used to carry heavier products such as appliances, electronic goods, wine, fruit and vegetables.

What is traditional packaging material? ›

In earlier days, natural materials were used in packaging such as tree leaves, bamboo, lotus leaves, palm leaves, gourds, coconut shells, shells of shellfish, animal skin etc. Later on manmade material were used including fabrics, ceramics, metals, lacquer ware, wood ware, jade ware, paper etc.

What are the different packaging characteristics? ›

The characteristics of packaging are to contain, to protect, to communicate and to market the product.

What are the components of packaging materials? ›

“Packaging component” means any individual assembled part of a package such as, but not limited to, any interior or exterior blocking, bracing, cushioning, weatherproofing, exterior strapping, coatings, closures, inks and labels.

How important are the types of packaging materials in food packaging? ›

The type of packaging you choose for your food is vital to ensure that it's protected, safe from contamination and that it's easier to transport. It offers a great opportunity to market your business more effectively to your customers, both existing and potential.

What are the 4 main functions of packaging? ›

Robertson (2005) attributes to packaging four functions: containment, protection, convenience and communication. In fact, each one of these functions comprises a number of different technological, engineering and commercial objectives.

What are the 4 levels of packaging? ›

Often, packaging can have 4 or more levels. An example of this would be a tube of tooth paste (primary level), in a folding carton (secondary level), housed in a display box (tertiary level) and then shipped in the fourth level of packaging which is, of course, its transportation packaging.

What is packaging process? ›

The packing process takes place in the warehouse and typically consists of choosing appropriate materials and an appropriate container to pack the products, weighing the package, and labeling it with the relevant invoice or packing slip.

What are easy packing materials? ›

Some of the more common alternatives to plastic packaging are paper bags, newspaper, shredded paper and cardboard boxes, all of which are are easy and affordable to source. They are also less harmful as compared to plastic packaging options.

Which types of packaging are the most environmentally friendly? ›

10 Eco-Friendly Packaging Alternatives for Your Business's Shipping Needs
  • Biodegradable packaging peanuts.
  • Corrugated bubble wrap.
  • Air pillows made from recycled content.
  • Recycled cardboard and paper.
  • Cornstarch packaging.
  • Mushroom packaging.
  • Seaweed packaging.
  • Biodegradable plastics and recycled plastics.

Which packaging material is the most environmentally friendly? ›

Corrugated cardboard and other forms of paper based packaging are rightly regarded as being amongst the most environmentally friendly and sustainable.

How many types of materials are there? ›

Traditionally the three major classes of materials are metals, polymers, and ceramics. Examples of these are steel, cloth, and pottery. These classes usually have quite different sources, characteristics, and applications.

What are the 6 requirements of packaging? ›

6 Required Functions of All Product Packaging
  • To protect products from damage.
  • To provide key information.
  • To contain multiple items.
  • To promote the product.
  • To improve storage effectiveness.
  • To consider environmental impact.
Oct 4, 2021

What are the 5 common material classification categories? ›

Materials can be majorly classified in five considerable categories i.e. Metals, Polymers, wood, fabrics and Ceramics.

What are the 3 levels of materials for packaging? ›

There are 3 levels of packaging: Primary, Secondary and Tertiary.

What are the two main types of packaging? ›

These categories are:
  • Primary Packaging. Primary packaging is to hold and protect the actual product and usually has most direct contact with the contents.
  • Secondary Packaging. Secondary packaging contains and protects the primary packaging. ...
  • Tertiary packaging.

What are the two different types of packaging methods? ›

Different Types of Packaging Methods
  • Plastics Packaging – This sort of packaging is mostly utilized for packing products that are fragile in nature or are non-perishable. ...
  • Pharma Packaging – This packaging solution is meant for pharmaceutical companies and is also often times referred to as drug packaging.
Nov 4, 2018

What is effective packaging? ›

Effective packaging for your product is what will make your product stand out among the competition. It is important that your packaging attract the attention of the consumer when it sits on the shelves of a store. You want packaging that will draw the consumer's attention and make them want to look at it.

What makes packaging efficient and effective? ›

Your packaging needs to speak to your audience. An important part of effective packaging is to know your audience, and to speak to them in ways that will help them build a connection with your brand. Research your target audience and model your packaging to fit their needs and interests.

What is the new product development process in marketing? ›

New product development (NPD) is a process of taking a product or service from conception to market. The process sets out a series of stages that new products typically go through, beginning with ideation and concept generation, and ending with the product's introduction to the market.

How do you ensure quality in packaging? ›

7 Things to Consider When Performing Packaging Quality Control Inspection
  1. Shipping Marks Should Be Clear and Legible On the Outer Carbon. ...
  2. Correct Number of Assortment and Units. ...
  3. Package Printing, Content Size, Material, and Color Should All Match Your Sample. ...
  4. There Should Be No Damage to the Carton, Label, or Product.
May 14, 2022

What are the advantages and benefits of using quality packaging materials? ›

Here are six benefits of using high quality packaging products:
  • Define your brand identity. High quality packaging will make clear what your brand represents. ...
  • Protect your product. ...
  • Enhance customer experience. ...
  • Customer retention. ...
  • Use it as a form of marketing. ...
  • Eco-friendly packaging.

What are 4 properties of packaging materials? ›

Basic mechanical properties of packaging materials (tensile stress, load force, modulus of elasticity and specific elongation) were assessed.


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