What Are The Different Types Of Packaging Materials

Are you stepping into the field of product packaging? If that’s the case, or if you need it on an individual basis, there are numerous items to consider and educate yourself on. And choosing the proper types of packaging materials is one of the most important things to think about during this time.  Plastic, metal, cardboard, paperboard, foil, shrink film, bio-plastics, boxes, clamshells, or something else? 

After you’ve thoroughly investigated your options, you can select the best material(s) for your packing requirements. However, you must understand which supplies are appropriate for your needs.

Cardboard Packaging Materials
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When you think about packaging, you generally think of cardboard boxes.  Paper, paperboard, and cardboard cartons are commonly used to pack products in stores and ship. Corrugated cardboard, for example, offers exceptional structural stability and can be used to ship, store, and even promote things. Because paper-based materials are easy to print on, it is simple to incorporate branding directly into your package. 

Furthermore, for environmentally aware businesses and consumers, paper and cardboard are easily recyclable, entirely renewable, and frequently reusable. They are not as strong as other packing materials despite being less expensive, lighter, and more flexible. Having said that, they are simple to stack, store, and collapse. Corrugated boxes are a common sight in the packaging business. Corrugated boxes have been a popular packing material for millennia. They are used on packaging lines all over the world to package thousands of items. Corrugated boxes are frequently ordered prefabricated into the standard rectangular box shape.

Plastic Stretch Wrap

Clear stretch film is one of the most widely used packaging materials on the planet. It is almost always used by companies with a shipping department. The various types of clear stretch film are mostly used to keep products contained on pallets before transportation. This is done to prevent things from collapsing or becoming damaged during the transportation process. Stretch film achieves this through a process known as “load confinement.” Simply put, load containment ensures that your load is appropriately secured in place so that it can reach its destination safely.
Stretch film is classified into two types: hand stretch film and machine stretch film.

Plastic Stretch Wrap
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Hand Stretch Film

Hand stretch film is specifically designed to be applied by hand and is hence often used in low-volume operations.

Machine Stretch Film

Machine stretch film is created specifically for use with a stretch wrap machine and is often used in high-volume packaging processes. Among the most frequent varieties of machine stretch film are:

  • Blown stretch film – created by the use of a blown extrusion method. This method entails blowing hot resins into a bubble. The bubble is then shaped into sheets, which are rolled and attached to a core tube.
  • Cast Stretch Film – created by the cast extrusion method. This method includes running hot resins through a series of cooled rollers, which solidifies the film.
  • Pre-Stretched Film – this is a film that has been pre-stretched during the production process.


According to Packaging Outlook, 90% of people chose liquids packaged in glass in 2017—mostly wine, beer, and other alcoholic beverages. In addition, some medical products are supplied in glass containers. Glass has been used for many years, notably in the food and beverage industries, because it is a nonporous, non-toxic material that does not leach anything into food and drink. As a result, glass retains the flavour and freshness of its contents for an extended period. 

It may also be made to be elegant and aesthetically pleasant, and it is completely recyclable. The fundamental disadvantage of glass is that it requires a tremendous quantity of heat and energy to make, resulting in a relatively big carbon footprint and high production costs.

Source: thespruce.com


Although most people do not come into contact with steel packaging daily, it is often used in industrial manufacturing for delivering huge quantities of things. Steel drums and other large transport containers, for example, can frequently be reused. Steel containers are extremely robust since they are designed to withstand rough handling, harsh weather conditions, and large loads. It is also one of the most recyclable items on the planet, with 70% of the steel used in shipping being reused.


Aluminium packaging is multifunctional, encompassing aluminium cans, foil, and aerosol items. This material is very corrosion resistant and produces well in the presence of light, ultraviolet rays, lubricants, and oxygen. Because of its sanitary and non-toxic properties, it is widely used to package food or medications.

Methods for Lowering Your Packaging Costs

As your business grows, packaging management may become a department in and of itself. As a result, you’ll want to figure out how to make it run more efficiently and cheaply. Here are a few ideas for lowering your packaging costs.
Maintain a well-stocked inventory by storing your most popular packing materials in an easily accessible location.

Move less often used packaging materials to a less accessible location.  If you are currently paying people to accomplish these repetitive jobs, consider investing in robotic equipment to assemble or pack cartons. To help your firm expand, assign your employees to higher-level, more fulfilling tasks and responsibilities instead.

Make sure to reduce the amount of material required by sizing packaging suitably or creating ways for packing materials to perform double purposes, such as as a self-standing retail display. Also, use smaller boxes or combine many things in the same package.