What are the main types of food pouches? - Readability Ltd

What are the main types of food pouches?

Published by Sam Edney on 27th September 2022 | Pouches
Various printed food pouches

Packaging plays a crucial role in keeping products safe and fresh. With globalisation and sustainability driving innovation in the field, manufacturers, distributors and marketers are having to carefully choose the right packaging concept for their products.

Today, food pouches are increasing in popularity in the flexible packaging industry due to their versatility and environmental benefits when compared to other packaging methods. The lightweight packages allow brand owners to reduce both costs and environmental impact while maintaining the structural integrity and safety of their products.

Powders, pastes, granules, ready-to-eat, liquid, solid, dried, wet – you name the food form, and there’s a type of food pouch for you to package it in. This is because pouches offer the perfect solution for maintaining a product’s freshness and ensuring that your food content:

  • Is protected against external conditions such as heat, cold, or moisture that may be present when in-storage, in-transit, and in-store
  • Is perfectly preserved, so that it looks, tastes, and smells exactly as you intend it to
  • Remains safe to consume.

But quality in the mind of the shopper extends beyond the taste and aroma of your product. Think of your packaging as the first impression when sitting on the shelf, or on a website, making your packaging choice key in the first stage of interaction between your brand and your target audience.

Here at Readability, food pouches can be designed to exact brand requirements and produced in relatively low quantities for market trials. Food pouches are available in quantities as low as 500 per stock-keeping unit (SKU), with the ability to run multiple different designs in the same digital printing run. This allows you to diversify your range and customise each flavour by colour or design.

So, if you’re a buyer or product manager of a beverage or food manufacturer with the task of sourcing high-quality pouch packaging, where do you start and what choices are available to you?

Pouch considerations

Pouches come with all kinds of advantages and features that make them particularly suitable for food packaging. These include:

  • Lightweight
  • Convenient to pack
  • Easy to carry
  • Available in a variety of BRC certified food grade materials for different types of use
  • Range of features and sealing/resealing options such as:
    • Spouts
    • Zips
    • Different types of seals
    • Different levels of recyclability and compostability, depending on the material.

At Readability, we offer a range of custom digitally printed food pouches that are designed and manufactured to meet your specific requirements, including;

Stand-up food pouches – the most flexible form of food packaging

Stand-up pouches are among the most popular flexible packaging trends for contents such as baby food, cheese snacks, dried meat, fruit, coffee, tea, spices, and sweets.

According to Globe Newswire, ‘food and beverages’ is projected to be the fastest-growing segment by application in the stand-up pouch market. And this increased demand leads to an increase in demand for food pouches. According to the same source, the global stand-up pouch market is projected to grow from USD 24.8 billion in 2022 to USD 36.7 billion by 2027.

Stand-up pouches are manufactured with a gusset at the bottom so that they can – as the name suggests – stand up on their own, without support, when filled. The fact that they don’t fall over makes them ideal for supermarket shelf displays, right down to the last one or two on the shelf.

Once used, stand-up pouches fold flat when empty, making them easy to package, store, and transport – reducing the total shipping space required and positively impacting your company’s carbon footprint – the ultimate in ‘flexible’ packaging.

Flat food pouches – simple, functional, and efficient food packaging

Or, flat food pouches, otherwise known as ‘pillow’ pouches, may be the solution for you. These three-side-sealed bags are an ideal choice for brands who produce single-serve foodstuffs, such as tea and coffee, condiments, and sauces, all the way to construction and technological products.

Like their stand-up cousins, flat food pouches are available in a wide range of materials, ranging from compostable through recyclable to disposable.

Retort pouches – an ideal solution to lightweight packaging for products that require extended shelf life

An alternative to packaging foods in tin cans, bottles, or jars for ultimate freshness and extended shelf life, retort pouches are a great choice. Made from a combination of materials, retort pouches are renowned for their properties that prevent oxidation and other degradation factors; allowing perishables to be packaged in an aseptic, sterile process.

Custom pouches – for a range of industry sectors and applications

For a completely bespoke service Readability can produce stand-up pouches in any size you require within our maximum and minimums.

We can offer just about any size of pouch, including:

250g – 160 x 230 x 45

500g – 190 x 260 x 50

1kg – 240 x 300 x 55

Our low minimum order quantity and the option to print multiple designs on your packaging means you can use our custom-printed stand-up pouches to test the market without having to order large quantities, reducing waste and saving you money.

Next steps

At Readability, we are on hand to advise you on the best material for your food and beverage pouch needs. Our bespoke service means all our pouches can be designed and manufactured to your unique specifications, ensuring that you have the right material for your purposes and that it stands out on the shelf.

For custom, digitally printed stand-up pouches, get in touch with our packaging specialists here and order a free sample today.

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