How Flexible Packaging Can Reduce Packaging, Transportation Costs

June 10, 2014 | By The Fres-co Team

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Supply chains around the world are striving to protect the environment in the normal course of business.

Reducing packaging costs, limiting carbon footprints, and minimizing the impact on landfills are key goals of globally responsible packaging suppliers.

This story stands as an example of how flexible packaging offers cost reduction benefits over traditional rigid packaging. The case in point involves Vanderbilt Minerals, LLC, an industrial minerals and chemicals company. Vanderbilt replaced their fiber drums and filling equipment for their Veegum® brand of products (a mineral used in a wide range of medical and cosmetic products). The primary goals were to improve sustainability and reduce related transportation costs.In pce of traditional fiber drums, Vanderbilt Minerals opted for a unique 20 kg. flexible gusseted bag to be used with the Termalock® industrial sealer designed by the packaging designers at Fres-co System USA. According to Vanderbilt’s representatives, the bag is sturdy, easy to open and reclose. It can also be palletized efficiently, thanks to Fres-co’s Hi-Flo™ degassing valve.

The Vanderbilt team experienced a four-fold increase in packing speed and a reduction in related transportation costs. Vanderbilt also achieved the following environmental improvements:

• The product packaging weight was reduced 56% in the new ergonomic 20 kg. bag, which had pour handles and EZ Open features built in.

• The post-consumer recycling rate was increased to 95% from 5%.

• Packaging waste, including primary and secondary packaging (i.e., pallet and unitizing waste) was greatly reduced:

  • Primary packaging waste was reduced 91%
  • Secondary package waste was reduced 41%
  • Total packaging waste was reduced 78%

• Greenhouse gases, measured in CO2equivalents, were reduced 78%. (This includes primary package and secondary packaging materials. It does not include filling, storage and distribution.)

In addition to improving the environmental impact and reducing costs, an effective industrial sealer can also deliver the following benefits:

  • Certify moisture content at the time of customer receipt globally
  • Greatly reduce or eliminate poor rejected seals, thus improving product containment while decreasing waste
  • Reduce storage costs by as much as half
  • Reduce “freight to customers” costs

Case studies like these support the thesis that flexible packaging provides many environmental and cost benefits over traditional rigid packaging.

For more than 40 years, Fres-co System USA, Inc. has manufactured high-performance flexible packaging systems and invented dozens of innovative breakthroughs including degassing valves, modified atmosphere technologies, and reclosure systems.

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