blog    Plastic Ingenuity Food Packaging

Why Food Companies are Turning to HPP Packaging

Posted by rhelmke on Food Packaging | Monday, April 10th, 2017 | 0 comments

High pressure processing (HPP) — also known as high hydrostatic pressure (HHP) or ultra-high pressure (UHP) processing — is quickly rising in popularity within the food packaging industry. How Does HPP Packaging Work? HPP subjects a food — liquid or solid — to pressure levels between 100 and 800 megapascal (MPa) and a temperature between 5°C (41°F) or below and 15°C (59°F) or above. Unlike homogenization, HPP achieves decompression by expanding the compressed food against a constraining liquid, thereby reducing the food’s temperature and bringing it toward its original value. Market Trends and Stats Food retailers and brand owners alike are increasingly turning to HPP packaging rather than retorting and aseptic packaging — a trend that is expected to continue. One report, “Global High-Pressure Processing Market: Trends Analysis & Forecasts to 2021,” published by Infinium, predicts that HPP packaging will make up $1.1 billion of the food packaging market within the next five years. Another study, “High-Pressure Processing Equipment Market – Global Trend and Forecast to 2022,” predicts an annual 11.26% growth rate. This study identified several key drivers of...

Rigid Plastics for Medical Device Packaging: PET vs. APET vs. PETG vs. HIPS

Posted by rhelmke on Medical packaging | Monday, March 6th, 2017 | 0 comments

In industries such as medical device packaging, where even the slightest oversight can be problematic for end users, it’s critical that products are designed with the highest possible structural integrity. From small blister packages and plastic lids to medical trays and clamshells, these protective materials must be sterile, FDA-approved, and impact-resistant to ensure end user safety. Why Package Your Medical Device in a Rigid Plastic? To ensure patient safety, medical device packages must meet a number of stringent requirements including: Tamper-evident Sterile Product-visibility Easy to open Rigid plastics — of which there are several subsets — fulfill each of these conditions, allowing for durable, reliable thermoformed solutions. Four of the most popular types of rigid plastics for medical device packaging are: PET APET PETG HIPS PET Thanks to its high-strength barrier and versatility, polyethylene terephthalate (PET) is one of the most popular plastic choices for thermoforming. It can be molded into nearly any shape before being cooled to enhance durability. The resulting resistance to tampering and outside elements makes PET suitable for sensitive applications such as food containers, beverage bottles,...

How Medical Device Packaging Protects Life-Saving Devices

Posted by rhelmke on Medical packaging | Tuesday, November 22nd, 2016 | 0 comments

Although the pharmaceutical and medical device packaging industry is varied and complex, it’s dominated by three main types of packaging: Medical work-in-progress (WIP) trays Pharmaceutical packing for prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) distribution Sterile barrier medical device packaging WIP trays allow pharmaceutical companies and medical device manufacturers to safely store and transport products en masse. Primarily used for storage or to move components from one manufacturing cell to another, WIP trays can also be used for final delivery of pharmaceuticals or medical devices such as syringe barrel trays or electrical components. Pharmaceutical packaging, on the other hand, encompasses any type of packaging that contains an OTC pharmaceutical product or drug or drug delivery device, such as a syringe. This packaging protects the product from damage and contamination during shipping and can be designed to aid the end user in actual delivery of the drug. Pharmaceutical packaging includes pill and syringe clamshells, pill and syringe blister packs, and liquid dosage cups. Many medical products — among them heart transplant kits, chemotherapy kits, and catheters — require specialized sterile barrier medical device packaging....

How to Become an In-House Thermoformer Expert

Posted by rhelmke on Custom Packaging | Tuesday, July 12th, 2016 | 0 comments

While a classroom education can offer great package design industry insights, a hands-on internship can provide a one-of-a-kind experience for students interested in careers as their company’s in-house thermoforming expert. We wanted to share some key ideas and considerations for these aspiring thermoformer experts. What Makes a Good Thermoformed Part? There are many important considerations for custom thermoforming, but the key to all of them is quality. From material selection and distribution to implementing cleanroom technology and heat sealing tooling, to ensuring a high speed to market, quality should be the focus at every touchpoint. The Basics Thermoforming lines consist of three types: Sheet feed – heavy gauge Roll feed – thin gauge Inline thermoforming – thin gauge pellet to part Of the three, inline thermoforming is the best practice for high-quality plastic packaging. The two different mold types – male and female – differ in shape and the way in which the material sinks into the mold. With male molds, hot plastic shrinks to the mold and the bottom is the strongest part of the tray – a critical feature...

Plastic Ingenuity Brings Home Two 2015 AmeriStar Package Awards

Posted by rhelmke on Custom Packaging | Friday, August 7th, 2015 | 0 comments

Sargento, GSK Partnerships Highlighted From food to pharmaceuticals packaging, 2015 made for a year of groundbreaking work at Plastic Ingenuity. A leader in quality, customer service, design, and manufacturing, PI’s standards of excellence have been recognized with superior results worthy of not one, but two, AmeriStar Packaging Awards, recognizing outstanding innovations in the packaging industry. GlaxoSmithKline and MD&M East The 2015 MD&M East Conference, held from June 9 – 11, showcased two exceptional breakthroughs from PI. We displayed products made with Eastalite™, a new copolyester material from Eastman. Additionally, we proudly showcased our first AmeriStar-awarded design for 2015. The recognized medical device packaging resulted from a partnership with GlaxoSmithKline, and was highlighted as an outstanding contribution to industry innovation. Sargento Balanced Breaks™ Health-inspired ingenuity isn’t just for the medical industry. Sargento Balanced Breaks™, a unique cheese snack pairing different varieties of cheese with fruits and nuts, required a packaging solution to encourage quality snacking in a consumer arena dominated by empty calories. This collaboration also garnered a 2015 AmeriStar Award. The specialized thermoformed package and paperboard sleeve resulted from combined...

Creating Plastic Packaging with Co-extrusion

Posted by admin on Plastics | Tuesday, February 17th, 2015 | 0 comments

  Similar to the way a 3D printer works, co-extrusion is all about melting and reforming plastics. There are a number of different extrusion methods, but all work under generally the same principle. Here is a look at the way extrusion works and what makes co-extrusion unique. The Basic Extrusion Process In the extrusion process, a machine with a hopper collects plastic beads or pellets that are melded together into one product. Any additional coloring or protective substances that need to be included in the finished product are then added. From the hopper, the plastic is funneled into a temperature-controlled chamber or tube. This tube heats the plastic to the point of melting. After the plastic is sufficiently melted, it may go through a variety of different molding processes. Plastic bags, plastic insulated wires, and PVC pipes are all created using an extrusion method. Common extrusion methods include: Sheet extrusion. Taking a large sheet of thick plastic and running it through a die to change the consistency of the sheet. After the sheet has been reformed and is ready to...

PET Packaging for Beverages

Posted by admin on Food Packaging | Tuesday, February 3rd, 2015 | 0 comments

    PET containers are used in a variety of applications, but most notably to store liquids and food. PET stands for polyethylene terephthalate, which has a number of benefits for consumers who regularly purchase food and drinks in plastic containers. Many of the packages are thermoformed, while drinking bottle and other narrow-necked containers are generally blow molded. If you come across a bottle with a number 1 on the bottom or side, you’ll know it’s made from PET. Reasons to Choose PET Packaging It’s safe. PET does not contain BPA, which is a plastic by-product that consumers have been told repeatedly to stay away from. PET containers are also shatterproof, so dropped bottles don’t create a mess. Another benefit is the cost saved from damage to stock in transit. With the durable nature of the plastic, accidents on route to stores are less likely to occur. The lightweight material is convenient. You won’t find an item that is more portable and disposable. Enjoy a meal out at the lake or take a PET-based water bottle on your next run....

How Polyethylene Packaging Can Benefit You

Posted by Rob on Custom Packaging | Tuesday, January 20th, 2015 | 0 comments

  There are a variety of packaging options on the market. When looking for the best packaging for your product, it can seem overwhelming to try to pick one. Even within the category of plastic packaging, there are a lot of different kinds. One of the most often used is polyethylene packaging; but why is polyethylene packaging a good choice for your product? Polyethylene is a kind of plastic derived from petroleum polymers. It’s one of the most durable types of plastic in existence today. It’s also inexpensive and highly chemically resistant. This means it can survive a variety of environmental hazards. Because of these characteristics, polyethylene packaging is widely considered superior to other packaging materials. This is what makes it so widely used. Packaging That Protects Polyethylene packaging doesn’t allow water vapor to pass through, meaning it can seal easily contaminated products away from dangerous elements. Many kinds of polyethylene packaging can be heat sealed, meaning the material can be wrapped tightly around the product and secured with an airtight seal. Many companies use polyethylene for electronic components because...

Things to Consider for Prototyping Plastic Packaging

Posted by Rob on Plastics | Tuesday, October 7th, 2014 | 0 comments

Prototyping is a necessary component of nearly every packaging run. As plastic packaging specialists, we understand how critical prototyping is and how it needs to be completed in a timely and cost-effective manner to ensure products can be packaged and placed in retail settings as quickly as possible. Here, we’ve outlined three main considerations that are crucial to plastic packaging prototyping that you should keep in mind when searching for your packaging manufacturer. Speed to Market Time is of the essence for many items that enter retail markets. Through traditional methods, product packaging, including tooling and, of course, prototyping, may take lengthy periods, sometimes as long as six months. For this process, a packaging design may go through several packaging or tooling companies, which can significantly increase production times. During this time, consumers may begin to lose interest in the products or develop brand loyalty with a different product. Because speed to market is so crucial for plastic packaging designs, the prototyping phase must be expedited as much as possible. By choosing a plastic packaging company that can complete all...

PET vs. PVC plastics: Which Material is Better for Packaging?

Posted by Rob on Plastics | Tuesday, September 30th, 2014 | 0 comments

Many types of plastic materials are available to produce packaging. When you need to create a design to package your products, you may soon discover that two plastic materials are commonly used: PET and PVC.  At Plastic Ingenuity, we have clients ask us which plastic materials prove to be most advantageous for their thermoformed packaging designs. Here, we’ve outlined explanations for these two plastics, as well as which proves to be the most beneficial to help you determine which to use. PET plastic PET, or polyethylene terephthalate plastics is one the most widely used plastics for thermoforming. The material is molded into the designated shape, and then dried for increased resistance. The plastic is used to produce food containers, beverage bottles, synthetic fibers and more. PET is the most common plastic for thermoforming packaging designs because of its high-strength barrier that can resist outside tampering or other elements. PVC plastic PVC plastic, or polyvinyl chloride, is a rigid plastic designed to withstand harsh impacts and extreme temperatures. The material is most commonly used when creating cables, roofing materials, commercial signage,...