Selecting the right product packaging is important for any business. However, for chemical companies, the choice is even more vital, because the packaging has to meet strict requirements. These include preventing the contents from affecting the environment; protecting anyone who handles the product, including suppliers and end users; and ensuring the integrity of the chemicals themselves.
Traditionally, chemical companies used multiwall paper bags to store and transport their products. However, paper bags can’t provide the level of protection that chemical materials require. This has led many manufacturers and suppliers to seek out a more durable, more reliable alternative—a journey that has led them to discover the barrier bag.
Meet the Barrier Bag
Barrier bags are constructed with multilayer laminated film that is hot-sealed after filling. Depending on their specific needs, chemical companies can opt for barrier bags that utilize composite materials—including aluminum foil, metallized polyester (PET), high-density polyethylene (HDPE), polyamide (PA), and ethylene-vinyl alcohol (EVOH)—through laminated coextrusion.
Barrier bags also provide chemical companies with flexibility in terms of how they are filled. You can select individual barrier bags or bags that are delivered on continuous or perforated rolls. And the bags are compatible with several usage scenarios, including automated filling lines, half-automated filling stations, manual filling stations, and scenarios in which manual hot-seal equipment is required at a client’s site.
The standard size for barrier bags is 25 kg (55lbs), although suppliers like Conitex Sonoco offer bags in sizes ranging from 20-50 kg. You can opt for bags with a one-way degassing valve, which is available on pre-cut bags, to exhaust air from inside the bag once it’s filled. This maintains quality for products that are sensitive to oxygen—which is key for many chemical companies.
Benefits of Barrier Bags for Chemical Companies
Barrier bags are an ideal solution for chemical companies. In fact, the term “barrier bag” is an indication of the product’s key benefit: Barrier bags are constructed to create a reliable barrier between their contents and the outside world. They provide superior protection, which helps chemical companies ensure the quality of their products while also protecting the environment and the people who handle the bags.
Packaging engineers at chemical companies are finding that the barrier bag offers several important benefits, including the following.
Manufacturers utilize multilayer laminated film to create barrier bags that are puncture-resistant and much more durable than paper bags. The packaging also protects against UV light and, importantly, prevents corrosive damage caused by humidity, moisture, oxygen, salt spray, aromas, grease, and other airborne contaminants.
For additional protection, chemical companies often opt for barrier bags that feature a one-way degassing valve. This seemingly small addition to the bags can help protect their contents in a big way: The degassing valve prevents chemicals from reacting with gases in the air during filling by forming a temporary dry atmosphere. This does away with any potential for moisture absorption, odor transfer, color deterioration, and ingress of UV light.
Packaging that is puncture-resistant and durable and includes a degassing valve is a must-have for chemical companies that deal with materials whose quality or integrity might be negatively impacted by outside contaminants. The design of the barrier bags ensures that their contents are better protected throughout the entire supply chain, from the manufacturing site through transport and storage, and all the way to the customer.
Barrier bags are compatible with several usage scenarios and easily integrate with each chemical company’s manufacturing systems. They can quickly be incorporated into automated filling lines or half-automated and manual filling stations. Plus, if the chemical company requires its bags to be hot-sealed on-site, the bags are compatible with manual hot-seal equipment.
The exterior of barrier bags feature an anti-slip coating, which makes them easier to pick up and handle. Safety is important in any industry, but it’s especially important for chemical companies, because many of its contents could be harmful to humans and the surrounding environment if a bag were to be dropped and split open.
Conitex Sonoco barrier bags include up to 10-color printing and a variety of customizable laminated film layers to maximize the impact of each bag’s labeling. This is in contrast to many paper bags, which are less vibrant and often include only a few different colors for printing.
Rethink Your Packaging
For chemical companies that are looking to safeguard their products, high-quality packaging must be a key consideration. Barrier bags offer a high degree of protection, with puncture resistance, durability, and a level of functionality that is superior to that of paper bags. To better protect your chemical products—and the people who handle them—consider how barrier bags could fit into your operation.