Flexible packaging’s innovative design, sustainable impact, and high-quality graphic treatments are all core drivers that have contributed to increased demand in the last several years. According to Allied Market Research, the global flexible packaging market is projected to reach $102.8 billion by 2031, an upward tick from $68.5 billion in 2021. As industries move to more conscientious use of materials and packaging, it is high time for brands, co-manufacturers, and co-packers to switch over to flexible packaging. One of the most innovative flexible packaging advancements available is the use of rollstock to form customized flexible bags, pouches, and stick packs. In this article, we take a deep dive into what rollstock is, how it is used, and the various benefits it offers across a wide range of industries and applications.
Rollstock refers to a long, continuous sheet of high-barrier laminated film that is formed on a roll around a cylindrical base. It is commonly used with horizontal or vertical form, fill, and seal (FFS) machinery, pouch equipment, or overwrap equipment to form customized bags and pouches that can be filled and sealed for airtight preservation of foods, liquids, chemicals, medical equipment, agricultural products, and more.
The packaging process with rollstock can be complex. Our team of packaging experts have worked hard to develop high-barrier laminated rollstock that can protect everything from coffee to tomatoes. We also have experience designing packaging processes and can help ensure the integrity of your product throughout production and distribution by choosing the right substrates for multi-ply laminations, including foil, nylon, MET PET, barrier coatings, and sealants.
Rollstock is a versatile material that can take on many different forms. It can be engineered specifically to the chemical properties of the product it contains, the sensitivity of the product to oxygen, moisture or light, and the physical strength required of the package.
It also offers the following advantages:
Rollstock offers unmatched versatility in the market. Although it is commonly used for specialty coffee, virtually any industry—especially those that use high-value ingredients—can benefit from switching from preformed bags to rollstock. Below are some use cases for rollstock across different markets.
As consumers resume on-the-go routines, convenience is key. Single-serve sachets and stick packs with tear notches made from rollstock offer quick and easy accessibility. Powder drink mixes with electrolytes, collagen, whey protein, or green juice powders can be cost-effectively packaged with rollstock with a quicker lead-time. Rollstock can also be used in the retail dry food market to form larger pouch and bag sizes for premium items like meat snacks, dried nuts and seeds, and hops—while also preserving shelf life for longer compared to rigid packaging.
With the rise of high-quality pet food innovations, there is an increasing demand for packaging solutions that better meet the needs of these products. Rollstock is equipped to protect premium ingredients against moisture ingress and oxidation, especially for “natural” and “clean-label” pet formulations that omit preservatives that typically help stabilize the product. From freeze-dried protein treats, powdered meal enhancers, to frozen and fresh pet food—and even horse feed, rollstock can also accommodate an array of food formats.
Packaging failures for the chemical market can be disastrous not only for your business’ reputation, finances, and regulatory commitments, but for the safety of everyone involved. Pouches and other packaging formed using rollstock provide durable protection against outside contaminants like oxygen and moisture, as well as barrier protection for those in contact with the chemicals. Industrial products can include everything from nylon resin to swimming pool chemicals.
Plus, flexible packaging options like rollstock can also help your business make progress in its sustainability initiatives. When evaluated over the entire lifecycle, flexible packaging has been shown to result in less fossil fuel usage, greenhouse gas emissions, and water use compared to rigid containers—all due its lightweight, compact size and high product-to-package ratio.
Products that need to be well preserved and sanitized from bacteria, like medical equipment and instruments, are ideal for rollstock. The rollstock films can be passed through a peroxide bath before being formed and filled to attain sterilization. Whether you’re looking for medical films, bags, or pouches to keep medical instruments, labware products, or high-profile medical devices clean and protected, rollstock can be customized to meet your needs.
Agricultural product packaging has taken on a new level of importance in recent years as higher-quality, more premium products have emerged. Compared to rigid containers, rollstock can provide an eco-conscious solution that protects agricultural chemicals and other products like fertilizer, grass seed, and insecticide, while also making them easier and safer to dispense. Rollstock offers proven protection against oxidation, moisture ingress, and dehydration and is durable enough to withstand being transported without breaking or puncturing, providing financial savings over time.
Rollstock is a versatile material that can be used across a wide range of industries and applications. Whether you’re in need of a durable and eco-friendly option for coffee bags, stick packs for electrolyte drink mix, or feed ingredient bags for horse feed, our team of flexible packaging experts can help you design a flexible package from rollstock that meets your objectives.
Start the conversation with a Fres-co team member to learn how our wide range of flexible packaging solutions can help you optimize your product packaging and processes.
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