Packaging is to contain and protect products for distribution, sale and storage. In ancient times, packages were made from natural materials such as reed baskets, wineskins, wooden boxes, pottery vases, wooden barrels, woven bags and etc. As time progressed, glass and bronze vessels were also used as packages. In the early days, paper were used to pack spices, hardware or vegetables by the early traders. Later canning of products was introduced into packaging to produce airtight containers made from tinplate for the preservation of food.
Other forms of packages include paperboard boxes, paper bags, bottles, cellophane overwraps, aluminium, polyethylene and etc. The labelling of packages were on separate materials and it can be in written or printed form. Now packaging has advanced and we also have the non-rigid packaging forms to pack and protect the packed products. Non-rigid or flexible packaging is any package or any part of a package whose shape can be readily changed, for example, the bags and pouches.
The flexible pouch packaging is made from the lamination of flexible plastic, metal foils and etc. to form a multilayer structure. This form of packaging enables the food and drinks to be handled and packed by aseptic processing. This sterile packaging is a better alternative to traditional industrial canning methods for food and beverages.
Pouch packaged foods include water to fully cooked meals, heat-treated meals, ready-to-eat which can be eaten cold. Some can be warmed by submersing in hot water or if you prefer, the food content can be poured out and heated in a microwave oven before eating. Pouch packaging is gaining popularity among producers of snacks, cheese and dairy items, pet food, lawn and garden products, natural food and medical items, etc.
Pouch packages comes in various pouch types such as 3-side seal, zipper, and stand-up pouch with bottom and side gussets. Printing and producing of flexible pouch packages involves pre-media, digital printing and laminating processes. There is no need of separate printing of labels. The use of digital makes printing faster and more efficient and improves graphic quality compared to that of conventional printing methods. Printer can “print on demand” with digital to save cost and inventory. Overall, digital printing is more economical and help saves customers money, at the same time receiving the results they want. The weight of a pouch is less than the regular cans or bottles. Plus the energy required to produce each pouch is less than producing packages made from metals, paper, and glass.