If you are in the business of shipping products, you likely know that there are dozens of packaging options available. You might even be asking yourself which option is best for your product. The best way to decide what works best for your packaging needs is to have complete information. Here are the relevant details you need to learn about corrugated packaging.
What is Corrugated Packaging?
Corrugated packaging is pretty straightforward. It is what most of us grew up calling cardboard. corrugated packaging consists of a layer of liner, which is a smooth paper board material, followed by a layer of fluted material called medium, and then another layer of liner. this multi-layer material provides a lot more strength than simple paperboard. by putting in the fluted layer in between, it achieves a level of structural integrity that allows it to be used for much more durable applications.
The traditional three-layer corrugated most of us think of is not the only option. The gauge of the fluting and thickness of the paperboard can vary greatly,, allowing for greater versatility. There are also heavy-duty corrugated materials that add extra layers of medium and liner, greatly increasing both the strength and protection offered by the cardboard.
It’s Environmentally Friendly
When compared to other packaging options, corrugated packing products are extremely eco-conscious. Paperboard pulp in the US is produced almost exclusively from planted trees that are grown specifically for logging. These companies plant new trees to replace the trees that are cut down. Since trees are most efficient at processing CO2 from the atmosphere when they are young, this process actually helps maintain a healthy tree population.
Compare this to plastic materials and styrofoams that are produced using fossil fuels. Corrugated materials will biodegrade, something else the plastics can not do, and they are easily recycled in pretty much every community, something that you cannot do with styrofoam or some plastics.
Corrugated materials are very cost-effective when compared to many alternative packing solutions. Plastics require specialized facilities to pack your products, and custom molds in order to use them as a shipping material. Packing peanuts are fairly inexpensive, but even if you are willing to accept that they will be in the landfill forever, they are messy and unwieldy.
Corrugated can be made in any custom size or shape and can be shipped and stored relatively inexpensively due to both its light weight and its ability to store flat. This helps keep storage and production costs down.
Corrugated does have some drawbacks. It is not weatherproof- if a corrugated box is left in the rain long enough, it will soak through. Even being placed in a puddle for too long can make the bottom fall out of your package. There are coatings that can be used on corrugated packaging materials to add a level of water resistance, so this issue can be mitigated, as most parcel services avoid putting packages directly in the rain anyway.
Corrugated packaging has high tensile strength, but can be compressed and lose its shape. This makes it less effective for loose items with no inherent form. The nice thing about it is that corrugated boxes can be combined with molded paperboard inserts to make pretty any package a custom fit.
Corrugated boxes are usually just thought of as a way to get heavy or fragile items from one place to another, but they are so much more than that. Corrugated boxes combine structural rigidity with cushioning qualities to protect your product and reduce shipping costs. They’re lightweight and clean, which has a direct impact on fuel and emissions, too.