6 Critical Powder Packaging Points to Consider

There are several factors that are vital and should be taken into account if you are planning to undertake packaging of powder products.  Powder packaging materials and powder packing machines are available in different variations which offers you an array of products to choose from. The factors that should be considered include the following six steps.

1. Know Powder Characteristics

The type of product you have is key when determining the most appropriate powder packaging machine for your applications. Although there are general types of equipment that are compatible with a wide range of products there are a few specialized packaging machines designed for specific types of powders. Powder characteristics include;

Free-flow Powder

Powder is characterized as free-flowing when it can flow through a very small opening only relying on gravity. Even when stored under unfavorable conditions such as 75 percent atmospheric humidity and stored in thin layers, this type of powder retains its ability to flow freely through miniature orifices as small as 6mm in diameter.

Free Flow Powder
Free Flow Powder

Non-Free Flow Powder

This powder variation has a much higher cohesive force and tends to retain the shape of an object it’s pressed against for example if you grip it in your hands it retains its shape. This type of powder typically has specialized equipment for packaging as it may prove difficult for general powder packaging machines.

Non Free Flow Powder
Non Free Flow Powder

Powder Bulk Density

Powder bulk density is a measure of the actual mass of the product in relation to its volume and this ratio also factors in the void in between the particles of the powder. This property is important when it comes to packaging as it factors in on the flow characteristic of your product. It also helps determine how efficient your packaging and filling equipment will be.

Powder Bulk Density Measuring Method
Powder Bulk Density Measuring Method

Weight

The weight which is essentially the volume of the product dispensed is vital in the overall packaging container as well as customer satisfaction in terms of product portion. The type of powder packaging material also factors in the overall weight of the product. It is important to ensure that you accurately dispense the stated product in their corresponding containers as it may lead to legal problems in case there are inconsistencies.

2. Choose Appropriate Packaging Container

There is a broad range of powder packaging materials that you can select from to find the one that best suits your applications. These packaging solutions are designed from different materials and come in varying shapes and sizes.

It is therefore important to understand the different types of containers there are to make more informed choices.

· Tins

This is a packaging material designed using metal and plastic. It offers a strong, durable packaging solution for a wide range of powdered products while protecting your product from moisture, air, and sometimes light. These containers are reusable making them sustainable and are available in various designs, shapes, and sizes.

· Cans

Designed mainly using aluminum, tin-plated steel, or zinc-plated steel this packaging container offers a sturdy and durable material for packaging your powder. This solution offers you great barrier protection as well as enhanced thermal conductivity. It provides your product protection against light, moisture, and air making it great even for dusty powders and food products.

· Bags

These are incredibly versatile packaging materials that come in various shapes and sizes and can be modified to accommodate different types of powder.

They can easily be customized to better suit your application. There are different variations of this packaging solution designed from various packaging materials making it an ideal customized powder packaging material

· Pouches

Various types of pouches incorporate different features which makes them suitable for packaging powders. This packaging material variation can be customized and is available in different shapes, sizes, and colors.

· Sachets

This is a minimalistic packaging solution that is designed using various materials that are typically designed for a single purpose use. The packaging container can be customized to better suit your application. They come in various colors, shapes, and sizes giving you a wide selection to select from.

· Stick Packs

This packaging features a narrow packaging solution that is designed for single use making it ideal for packaging products that are used on the go. You can utilize this customized packing material for packing a wide range of powdered products.

3. Consider Powder Filling Technology

There are various powder-filling technologies that are suited for different types of powders and are used to characterize filling machines. Understanding how each method works is important as it will help you select the, most appropriate filling method for your applications. These methods include e;

Gravimetric Powder Filling

This is a highly efficient dispensing method that relies on the weight of the powder to accurately fill the desired containers. It is typically incorporated into an automated system that requires no contact with the product making it ideal for applications that include powders with abrasive properties such as pharmaceuticals as well as food products that can easily be contaminated.

Gravimetric Powder Filling Machine
Gravimetric Powder Filling Machine

Volumetric Powder Filling

In volumetric filling, the weight of the powder is first accurately measured before getting dispensed into tits respective containers. This filling method is very precise and relies on its sensors and control panels to properly function minimizing manual input.  They are used to fill a wide range of containers and can be used for abrasive powders, food, and pharmaceuticals.

Volumetric Powder Filling Machine
Volumetric Powder Filling Machine

4. Choose Efficient Powder Filling Machine

It is important that you select a powder-filling machine that takes all your application needs into consideration. This will ensure that you run more efficient and productive operations. You should consider these factors when selecting the most appropriate filling machine for you.

Powder Product Characteristics

Different powders have different characteristics which may require specialized filling machines. For example, powder that is free-flowing efficiently be dispensed by the gravimetric filling machine as it also relies on gravity to aid its dispensing. Therefore, the size, shape, and flow ability of the powder will directly influence the type of filling machine you require for the application.

Level of Accuracy

Precision is vital for specific industries such as pharmaceuticals and it is therefore important to select a filling method with an enhanced accuracy. When it comes to accuracy in terms of weight technology such as the volumetric filling machine is generally preferred as it ensures that only the desired volume of product is dispensed into its corresponding containers.

Types of Packaging Containers

The different types of containers come in various shapes and sizes and are designed from different materials. It is therefore important that you select a filling method that is compatible with your desired containers. For example, a machine that is used to fill bottles may not be useful when filling sachets.

5. Know your Industry

There are a broad range of industries that deal with powdered products. These industries include the following;

  • Pharmaceuticals: Different types of medicine and other health products are produced in powder form. These products often require precise measurements and the packaging materials used should have great barrier protection to protect the sensitive contents automated systems are preferred for this type of product.
  • Food and Beverage: There is a wide range of products that are in powder form in the food and beverage industry It is important to get packaging material and equipment that are certified for food use to minimize the risk of contamination of the product.
  • Chemicals: Safety is a key consideration when handling chemicals in powder form. These powders are often abrasive and may pose health risks to operators, it is therefore key that you use fully automated systems when packaging this type of powders.
  • Minerals: Different powder minerals are used for commercial and industrial applications. You should take into consideration the powder characteristics when selecting the most suitable method of filing and packaging these powders.
  • Automotive: In this industry, supplementary products may come in powder form such as coating used for the different components in the automotive. You should consider the packaging material as well as the powder characteristics when selecting the best method for packing this type of powder.
  • Furniture: Different types of powder coating are used in this industry to enhance the appearance and functionality of some of the furniture produced. These powders have different constitutions which should factor in your choice of powder filling equipment and powder packaging material.
  • Architectural: Powder coatings are often utilized in this industry in the different components under construction such as windows or ceilings among others. The type of powder you have will help you determine the best packaging solution.
  • Agriculture; Agricultural supplementary products such as fertilizers are available as powders of different sizes and constitutions. You should consider factors such as the composition of the powder and the quantity required when selecting the best packaging method
  • Construction: In this industry large amounts of different types of powders are often utilized for various purposes. It is important to ensure that your packing material will elevate the shelf life of the product while offering sufficient barrier protection.
  • Fabrication: There are several powders used in the fabrication processes. The powders differ in properties depending on the composition and intended use. You should therefore consider these factors when deciding on the best packaging method.
  • Consumer Products: there is a wide range of powder products used by consumers whose uses range from domestic to industrial usage. The type of powder you have will help you select the best packaging solution.
  • Appliance Industry: Appliances often require powder coating which comes in various compositions and sizes. The properties of the powder and its intended use should factor in the type of packaging you select.
  • Cosmetic: The different powders used in cosmetics should be packaged in appropriate containers using the appropriate materials.

6. Other Best Practices for Powder Packaging

Other external factors should also be considered when aiming to elevate your operations. These factors factor in on the overall success of your brand and should therefore be deliberated on. They include;

Understand your Target Market

It is important to understand your target, market as it will help you determine the best packaging material and containers to use. Construction and industrial products for example prioritize protection over appearance. Consumers of cosmetic products as well as food and beverages may lean towards a product with a higher visual appeal as well as functionality such as single-serve packages.

Consider Branding and Marketing

Your brand is of utmost importance and most marketing strategies are aimed at improving the outreach and loyalty to the brand. It is important that you get a packaging solution that allows you to customize the final outlook to better suit your brand if you want to increase consumer engagement. Your choice of packing should be of high quality and visually appealing to increase visibility among consumers and in so doing elevate your brand.

Evaluate Cost of Packaging

There are different types of packing solutions and equipment that vary in size and scale. It is important that you select packaging equipment that caters to the scale of your operations to ensure that your cost of packaging does not surpass your budget. If you wish to expand your scale of operation in the future it is important to get equipment that can upgraded or that can accommodate an increase in productivity

Conclusion

Your choice of powder packaging material and equipment is determined by several factors including the properties of the powder and its intended use. The type of material you decide on can also help you determine the most suitable packaging equipment as compatibility is key. You should factor in your application need and the other factors mentioned to select the most efficient powder packaging solution.

 

More resources:

Milk Powder Packaging Guide – Source: Jochamp

How Powder Filling and Sealing Machines Work  – Source: Jochamp

 

 

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