Ever wondered how grocery stores and other retail stores get fruit wrapped so tightly or keep bulk purchases (like multiple soap bottles, etc.,) together? The answer is polyolefin shrink bags, vacuum pouches, thermoform packaging, and shrink sleeves, which compress over the objects to vacuum seal the objects. The tight wrap provided by polyolefin shrink bags keeps food items fresher for longer and free of contaminants and are safe for direct contact with food. They’re perfect for popping something in the freezer or cold storage until you need it. Food sealing machines commonly use a type of shrink wrap — polyolefin and PVC shrink film are the two most common types — to package food. However, it can be used for other purposes, such as gift baskets, CD or DVD packaging, boxes, and regular packaging.
What Exactly Are Polyolefin Shrink Bags?
Polyolefin srhink bags are composed of a type of shrink plastic that’s quickly emerged as the top choice for packaging products, regardless of whether they’re edible or not. Shrink wrap itself is made of polymer plastic film. When exposed to heat, it shrinks against whatever it’s over, ensuring a tight seal. Gift baskets, stationary/cards, food packaging, and other objects are commonly shrink wrapped.
Polyolefin bags come in a variety of sizes ranging from four by six inches to six by twelve inches and everything in between. In many cases, manufacturers will sell the bags in bulk at a special quantity price, so you can get as many as 500 at one time for a good price. They should all be FDA approved and make packing up your products a cinch! They’ve rapidly beat PVC shrink wrap in popularity, for a variety of reasons, discussed below.
What Are the Benefits of Using Polyolefin Shrink Bags?
These type of shrink wrap has grown in popularity, especially when it comes to the shrink bags. Polyolefin emits less of a smell once it’s sealed, the seal itself is significantly stronger, and the storage ends up being more flexible than PVC shrink wrap. They’re also chlorine free, eliminating hydrogen chloride gas, which is a corrosive material and in high quantities can be dangerous. (So not ideal for manufacturing or food packaging companies sealing large quantities of goods with shrink wrap that isn’t chlorine free!) Another benefit to polyolefin shrink bags is the fact that because it lacks plasticizers, the temperature can fluctuate without a chance to the material. It can move from a hot to a cold environment during manufacturing, shipping, and storage, and the shrink bags won’t harden or soften, depending on the temperature. PVC shrink film unfortunately does have plasticizers, so is more likely to grow hard or soft depending on the temperature.
Additionally, polyolefin shrink bags have a high clarity so the items can easily be viewed without any bubbling or wrinkling. The film itself is soft but strong, protecting the item but not deterring customers. There’s no smoke or odors to it and many bags have a small hole to keep ballooning from happening. Shrink film is also recyclable.
What Else Should I Know About Shrink Film?
If you’re planning on using shrink film, you’ll probably need some type of machinery, which can depend on what kind of shrink film you’re using. You’ll definitely need some kind of heating equipment, like heat bars, L-Bar sealers, or shrink tunnels. There are plenty of resources online that will help you measure the correct amount of shrink film you need or what size shrink bag you might need to package your items. If you’re trying this at home, you may want to consult a professional for help, or someone you know who has successfully shrink wrapped before. There are plenty of issues you can run into, like wrinkling, ballooning, or dog eared corners. Although the shrink wrap isn’t terribly expensive, you probably don’t want to waste it, so you’ll want to know how to do it right the first time.
Shrink wrap and shrink wrap bags can be incredibly helpful for packaging items up in a condensed and sturdy manner. You can easily order many different sizes online and see for yourself how great they work!