The benefits of digitally printed pouches - Readability Ltd

The benefits of digitally printed pouches

Published by Sam Edney on 11th May 2022 | General
Printed pouches

Digitally printed pouches are a highly customisable and effective form of packaging for food, snacks, pet foods and dietary supplements.

Great advances made in digital printing technology have paved the way for pouches to be created quickly using vibrant colours that don’t fade, which means that products packaged in digitally printed pouches can be made to stand out boldly from their competition on retail shelves.

However, that’s not all. There are many other benefits of using digital techniques to print onto pouches, which we will now look at. 

Reduced origination costs

One of the biggest advantages of digitally printed pouches is the lack of upfront set up costs. Also called origination costs, set up costs usually comprise fees for plates that allow for colour and design customisation.

Digital printing is a four-colour process that uses electronic files (such as PDF artwork) and dots of colour to produce an image using toner or ink. Unlike conventional printing, digital print allows multiple designs to be printed without the need for costly plates, making it ideal for packaging.

This means items can be printed in very small numbers, for example for trial or review purposes, removing risk and minimising upfront costs.  

Fast turnaround

The manufacturing process for digitally printed pouches is 5-10 days from artwork approval. This makes the production process comparatively fast, so that time from approval of artwork to finished article is unmatched.

Whether you need 500 or 50,000 pouches, the print run commences as soon as artwork is approved and your production slot is booked. The result is a consistent packaging solution that’s ready to go sooner than industry standard. And if extra pouches are required, the process can start again quickly and easily to fulfil the additional order.

Low minimum order quantity

One of the problems with many printing companies, as well as with more traditional forms of printing, is the high quantities that must be produced to have your work accepted. This can be a big issue, especially for organisations who only require a small number of pouches.

However, the digital pouch printing process at Readability is different, so that even the smallest number of pouches can be printed whenever required. Theoretically, with digital print there is no minimum order quantity but, in reality, the setup costs to run ultra-low volumes usually rule out orders below 500 pieces.

This is a perfect solution for producing small numbers of pouches for new flavours or seasonal releases, for example.  We can also offer trial options, these include unformed, machine printed and laminated proofs to check print, as well as various types of formed proofs that give you a feel for how your product will look prior to committing to an order.

Please bear in mind that the costs of setting up 500 pouches will lead to higher pricing initially.

High flexibility

Digitally printed pouches offer a great way to try out and test new packaging designs. Any aspect of design from colours to images to brand copy and logos can be varied to find the most appropriate packaging design that appeals to your target customers.

This process can be continuous once feedback has been reviewed. Changes can be made easily without causing delays to prevent supply chain interruption.

Order only the quantity required

Waste is common in the packaging sector, especially when it’s hard to control how many packaging items are made. This has become a hot topic for everyone trying to reduce their environmental impact. The number of ‘overs’ or unused items of packaging that have to go to landfill or recycling can amount to significant quantity over time, so as well as significant waste it’s also costly.

It doesn’t have to be this way with digitally printed pouches.

Because the digital printing process is so efficient and controlled, brand managers and purchasing professionals can order as many or as few pouches as required. This helps reduce waste, improve overall efficiency and generate savings which can be passed on to customers.   

Print different designs on the same run

If you have a product with multiple SKUs or variants, which for example use the same packaging size and material type but different designs, these can be grouped into a single print run.

This means that if you need varying quantities of the same size pouch across several print SKU’s, you can build large orders to reduce your cost per unit. This can be used to your benefit with small runs of new products, which can be effectively hidden within larger orders – meaning you avoid small order fee’s.   

An advantage of the digital press and companywide understanding of the processes of digital print allow us to offer this capability of producing multiple SKUs in the same print run, giving you much more flexibility when planning your packaging requirements. 

Reach new customers

Compared with other packaging options, digitally printed pouches offer ways to appeal to more customers. For example, the pouch design can be evolved with new colours, or customised for local markets with local messaging or language.

If your business needs to localise its branding to appeal to a specific new audience or age group, or to reflect a new deal or offer in product packaging, digitally printed pouch packaging can support your strategy, giving you flexibility and bringing your brand front and centre again.

Publicising sustainable pouches

Given the extent to which sustainability is increasingly influencing consumer shopping choices and habits, having a range of pouch materials with different properties and sustainability levels is vital for most brands.

Pouches can be digitally printed on a range of substrates, from fully compostable to kerbside recyclable through to store front recyclable options.  

Because of the flexibility to change on-pouch brand messaging, these sustainable material messages can be made prominent on digitally printed pouches so that existing customers know their product choice is eco-friendly, compared to many traditional forms of packaging.

Make your products stand out with digitally printed pouches

So, there we have it.

The benefits of digitally printed pouches for food, snacks, pet foods and supplements are there for manufacturers to take advantage of.

As well as offering efficiency benefits and a competitive edge over traditionally printed pouches and packaging product, you have the capability to make your products stand up and stand out on the shelf from your competitors.

For custom pouch designs that can be changed around quickly, delivered fast and with no origination costs exactly how you want them, speak to one of our pouch specialists at Readability today and we’ll help you navigate the choices to arrive at the right solution for your product. Call us on 01440 712 273, email or complete our contact form.

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