You likely would not do anything that would damage or lessen the effectiveness of your FIBC bulk bag. After all, a faulty bag can impact your customer’s end product and your company’s reputation, not to mention the safety risks involved for those handling the bags. In an effort to help you make the most of your flexible packaging products, here are some bulk bag tips.
When bulk bags are used properly they can effectively store raw materials as they’re moved from process to process or manufacturer to manufacturer. It’s our goal at Conitex Sonoco to design and construct quality flexible packaging products through our BulkSak brand. We have practical manufacturing and troubleshooting experience since 1989 - and we’ve seen it all. Here are some common mistakes.
Don’t Make These Mistakes with Your FIBC Bulk Bags
Sizing Bulk Bags
Larger, experienced companies have their own packaging engineers and have to pass internal quality audits. Getting a correctly-sized bag is more of a challenge for individuals new to using bulk bags.
The wrong-sized FIBC means the bag won’t fill and/or discharge properly, causing problems for you and your customers. These three pieces of information will help get you the right size:
- Determine how much you want the filled bag to weigh
- Define your product’s weight per cubic foot
- Measure the pallet size the bag will go on
From these three key pieces of information we can determine your bulk bag size.
Reusing FIBC Bulk Bags
For the most part, we advise against the reuse of bulk bags. The bags we sell are only warrantied for a single use because they can fatigue. However, a bag isn’t necessarily going to fail after a single use.
If you would like a reusable bulk bag, you should consider a 6:1 FIBC. They are designed for multiple uses and multiple trips. Be aware these bags are not meant to be used indefinitely. Be sure to clean and check each bag for each use.
The biggest issue with reusing bags is residual material because there is a risk of contamination when working with certain materials such as food or chemicals. You might be able to reuse a bag if you’re working with sand, gravel or some agricultural products. But a single bulk bag is very economical, so it may be well worth it to play it safe with a new bag each time.
Discarding Bulk Bags
Don’t rush to throw your used bulk bags into the trash. They can be recycled depending on the product they were carrying. Most FIBC bulk bags are made from virgin polypropylene resin - which means the resin doesn’t contain recycled materials.
This removes contamination concerns and meets the US FDA Food Contact Regulation 21 CFR 177.1520 requirements.
The Flexible Intermediate Bulk Container Association doesn’t have a recommended shelf life for a FIBC. The life of a stored bulk bag depends on how it’s made and how it’s stored. Exposure to extreme sun, temperature and humidity can negatively impact the shelf life of a bulk bag.
While these bulk bags aren’t made from recycled materials, they can be ground down and returned to resin, and that resin can be sold and used in other processes.
Getting the Most Out of a Bulk Bag
Following your manufacturer’s instructions will ensure your FIBC bulk bags get you the results you need. If you have any questions about how your bulk bags or any other flexible packaging products should be handled, let us know. We’re happy to help you determine the right bulk bag for your process.
Tags: Flexible Packaging