Ultimate Custom Packaging Guide

What Type of Custom Packaging Exists & How Can They Be Useful?

Custom packaging is essentially a unique design to hold any product safely and securely, especially while traveling in transit. That being said, all products require some sort of packaging no matter the shape or size. The style of packaging will depend on many different factors that each product possesses, such as: weight, delicacy, application, texture, and size.

In this article, we will discuss different styles of custom packaging and how they can be beneficial to any company.

Custom Returnable Packaging

In the world of packaging (especially automotive), custom returnable packaging are frequently used as they can cut down costs in the long run and save on material waste. The reason for this is because you typically reuse returnable packaging instead of discarding them, which results in significantly less waste. Also, as time goes on, these packaging styles will outlast the competition due to the robust structure build, which inevitably saves time and capital.

Custom packaging for this type are usually cut to size, assembled and fastened or placed in either a hand held tote, plastic bulk container or a steel frame. In fact, the term for this internal custom build that holds the product is known as “dunnage”. Dunnage is basically the packaging that’s custom cut and built to be fastened or placed into a returnable container for the product to rest on securely.

The most common materials utilized in this style of packaging are: steel, high-density polyethylene plastic, cross-link foams, corrugate plastic sheets, and conpearl sheets. Surely, these materials are cut to a custom size to accommodate for the product to be packaged. As a result, the cut out to hold the product will be cut to the exact contour of the part to ensure minimal movement while the product is secured in the package.

Custom Expendable Packaging

Expendable packaging is an alternative to returnable packaging and can also be cut and formed to create custom packaging. To simplify, expendable packaging are typically used and discarded more often as opposed to returnable packaging which results in increased waste.

Initially, this style of packaging has lower costs but can be more costly in the long run. To explain, returnable packaging can be reused in contrary to expendable packaging, which results in less reorders and long term capital savings.

In conclusion, these expendable packages don’t last as long as returnable packages and cannot hold heavier products due to the non-rigid materials used, as the standard materials utilized for this style of packaging are paper corrugates, corrugated cartons and wood.

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Both packaging styles provide significant value and the decision to choose either option should depend on the budget and how much you’re willing to spend. If you value lower costs up front and don’t mind disposing more often, then choose expendable, but if you value higher costs up front and prefer longevity and long term savings, then choose returnable.

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Plexform specializes in returnable packaging and material handling solutions such as custom steel racks and interior bulk container/tote dunnage. Our mission is to reduce transportation costs and product damage by producing custom packaging specifically tailored to each unique part.

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