Flexible Packaging

How Are Stand-up Zipper Pouch Bags Manufactured?

By December 14, 2018 No Comments

Product packaging has revolutionized over time with consumers now having access to a wide range of products in high barrier stand-up pouches. These pouches are not just aesthetically pleasing, but they are convenient, environmentally friendly as well. Many food companies have replaced traditional packaging mediums with stand-up pouches to respond to consumer desires for protection and convenience while concurrently being an environmentally friendly and cost-effective alternative to traditional rigid packaging.  Although the shapes and graphics used for stand-up pouches may vary widely, one common design feature is the ability to reseal the package using a zipper engineered into the construction. 

How are Stand-up Zipper Pouch Bags Produced?

The market has voted and the results are definitive; stand-up pouches are convenient and easy to use. However, the process of pouch manufacturing is quite complex. It requires a series of steps to produce a sturdy and durable pouch.

Materials & Structure Overview

The sheet of film used to manufacture a pouch contains multiple layers, each included to perform specific functions.  Each layer provides an element of barrier protection, e.g., keeping oxygen or moisture out of the pouch or locking it into the pouch, depending upon the specific product and its storage requirements. The general rule is the more layers, the more protection. The outermost layer is also used as the print vehicle.  The innermost layer also acts as the sealing layer which creates hermetic seals when a heat bar is applied to the exterior. 

The shape and general orientation of stand-up zipper pouches also allow them to act as a billboard for brand owners to create an eye-catching advertisement of their products on the shelf. 

Images, product information or the company name is printed on the outermost layer. Various processes may be used. Flexographic printing is embraced by many manufacturers and customer as the method that delivers the best images in the most cost-effective manner.  After printing and laminating the multiple payers together, the film is cut in different widths according to the desired size of the stand-up pouch. Later, these layers are merged using heat sealing.

Step-by-step Process of Manufacture

A continuous web of material is required to produce high-quality stand-up pouches. The following describes a common process.

Step 1: The material goes through multiple formers to create a W-shaped gusset at the bottom of the pouch. This step is crucial because the bottom gusset is the design element that allows the pouch to stand when filled with product. It also seals the inside faces of the web, in the case of the zipper, near the top edge.

Step 2: After the gusset formation, the next step is to heat seal the gusset in place. At this stage, the zipper is attached using a heat sealing bar. 

Step 3:  Next, the manufacturer seals the vertical seals and crushes the ends of the zipper as the last step of the zipper application process.

Step 4: At this point, the pouches come off the end of the production line. If the pouches are being made by a packaging manufacturer, the finished empty pouches are shipped to the brand owner for filling and sealing. If the pouches are being produced by the brand owner, they are then routed to a line that automatically fills and seals them in one continuous stream. The latter process is known as FFS, form, fill and seal.

Benefits of Stand-up Zipper Pouch Bags

If you are wondering why consumers and manufacturers favor stand-up zipper pouches, it is because this style is durable and has many benefits. These pouches are excellent for protecting, preserving and displaying products that will be used again and again. 

The materials used to construct the pouch keep the item protected from oxygen and moisture and preserves the freshness until the item reaches the consumer. After opening, the zipper extends the protection.   The ability to easily open and close the pouch is highly desired as a convenience feature by consumers. Plus, the zipper prevents spills and product contamination. It is ideal if you have children because re-opening and reclosing stand-up zipper pouches does not special tools.

Zipper pouches can be constructed in a wide range of sizes. High barrier stand-up pouches can be printed with eye-catching designs so companies can use them for branding purposes. Moreover, manufacturers of stand-up pouches with zipper offer different structures such as laminated combinations of paper, film, foil. 

Stand-up zipper pouches have become common for a variety of food packaging purposes such as dry mixes, sweeteners, dehydrated fruit, frozen and prepared foods, snacks, seasonings along with pet food and treats,  among others.

As has occurred with food packaging, other industries have switched to stand-up pouch packaging as well. Now, you can also find many chemical products, garden material and even cleaning supplies in zipper pouches.

Stand-up Zipper Pouch Bags with LPS Industries

The manufacture of stand-up zipper pouch bags requires state-of-the-art technology and follows a rigid step-by-step process. From a product developer, as well as a consumer perspective, this durable form of packaging is widely appreciated and continues to make inroads in a variety of industries.

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