Pouch Anatomy 101

Ever wondered what’s in a pouch?

Our food pouches are full of great things—including, but not limited to, the quality products that go inside them. The team members at PouchTec have been named as inventors on more than a dozen packaging and formulae patents at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. With a variety of shapes to varying spouts, zippers and directional pours, we can create up to 100 different iterations of flexible pouches. That means you get a pouch that’s perfectly crafted—and customized for your product.

Glossary of Pouching Terms

Learn more detailed information about specific parts and processes that go into the creation of our food pouches.

Adhesive Lamination: A laminating process in which individual layers of packaging materials are laminated to each other with an adhesive. Used to fabricate high barrier or exceptionally durable film structures.

Coextrusion: Simultaneous extrusion of two or more different thermoplastic resins into a bonded, sandwich-like film with clearly distinguishable individual layers.

COF: Coefficient of friction, a measurement of “slipperiness” of plastic films and laminates. Measurements are usually done film surface to film surface. Important factor in running some pouch forming equipment.

Die-Cut Pouch: A pouch that is formed with contour side seals that then passes through a die-punch to trim excess sealed material, leaving a contoured and shaped final pouch design. Can be accomplished with both stand up and pillow pouch types.

Extrusion Lamination: A laminating process in which individual layers of packaging materials are laminated to each other by extruding a thin layer of molten synthetic resin (such as polyethylene) between the  layers. Used to fabricate high barrier or exceptionally durable film structures.

Form, Fill & Seal Pouch: A pouch that is formed from roll-stock, filled, and sealed all on a single, multi stage machine.

Foil: A thin gauge (0.2285-0.325 mils) aluminum foil laminated to plastic films to provide maximum oxygen, aroma and water vapor barrier properties. Although it is the best barrier material, it is increasingly being replaced by metalized films because of cost. (Sometimes the multi-layer film containing a foil barrier layer is generically referred to as “the foil film.”)

HDPE: High density, (0.95-0.965) polyethylene. Has a much higher stiffness, higher temperature resistance and much better water vapor barrier properties than LDPE, although it is considerably hazier.

Heatseal Layer/Sealant: A heat-sealable layer in plastic packaging films and laminates. Can be either adhesive laminated or extrusion coated onto a non-sealable film (or foil). This is also typically the product contact layer and often predominantly made from LLDE.

LLDPE: Linear low density polyethylene. Tougher than LDPE and has better heat seal strength, but has higher haze.

Opacity: A measure of the hiding power of pigmented (mostly white) plastic films. It is beneficial for packing materials sensitive to light (visible or ultraviolet). Foil film structures are typically opaque. Metalized structures are high opacity but typically not opaque.

Pillow Pouch: A simple three side seal or four side seal rectangular pouch. Resembles a pillow after filling.

Plow-Bottom/Delta Bottom Pouch: A stand-up style pouch that is made from one piece of film. The front, gusset, and back are continuous, so there is no side seal or tack at the gusset.

Premade Pouch: A pouch that is fabricated on a separate machine during a separate step before being utilized in the filling machine. The pouch making step and filling step are completely separate and may even occur at different facilities and by different manufacturers.

Repeat Tolerance: The print variability a pouch forming or filling machine can adjust to and still produce the desired pouch. Print variability is typically impacted by film stretch during printing, the laminating process or by rewinding tension control.

Stand Up Pouch (SUP, Doyen Pouch, DoyPack®*): Invented by Louis Doyen, a pouch with a gusset area folded inward and upward and then sealed along both sides. This pouch can expand wider at the base when filled to offer a stand up ability for storage and/or display purposes.

Stick Pack Pouch: A long narrow pouch with a top and bottom seal. Typically made on a vertical form, fill and seal machine.

Tear Notch: A portion of the pouch that has been pre-cut to help the consumer initiate the tear off action.

*DoyPack® is a registered international Trademark owned by Louis Doyen.

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