Category Archives: Custom Thermoforming

6 Facts About Thermoform Trays

Everywhere you look, you are sure to find thermoform trays. Grocery stores, restaurants, doctor’s offices and retail stores use millions of trays throughout the year. At Indepak, creating thermoformed trays is a huge part of our business, and if you need quality thermoform trays, here’s a quick look at thermoform trays in general and what we can provide.

1. Thermoform Trays Protect Products
Thermoform plastics are so easy to mold and shape that you can create virtually any configuration needed for a thermoform tray. If your product has several parts, our trays will be designed to fit each piece exactly. Because the plastic trays can be formed to include specially designed cavities for each product part, you won’t need to use as much packaging to ensure that your product is protected.

2. We Create Trays For Many Industries
While some companies focus on specific industries, such as the food and beverage industry, our facility features a variety of thermoforming equipment. This allows us to meet the unique needs for a variety of industries. This includes the specialty foods industry, as well as the medical industry, electronics industry, agricultural industry and, of course, countless unique retail manufacturers. We can even create business-to-business tote trays for industrial purposes.

3. We Create Trays For Many Products
Thermoform trays are a perfect packaging solution for many products. Within the food industry, these trays can protect and display food items such as packages of candies, cookies or crackers, frozen dinners, and large deli platters. We also design all sorts of trays for restaurants, delis and grocers to help them serve, store and display their food items.

Within the medical and pharmaceutical industries, thermoform trays can be used to hold medical kits, vials of medicine and various sterile instruments. At Indepak, we produce low-particulate packaging for our medical and pharmaceutical clients, which is intended for non-sterile as well as downstream sterilization applications.

For retailers, we can create many different types of packaging. For instance, if you manufacture toys, we can design a thermoformed tray that holds several toys of varying sizes and shapes. This tray then can be placed into additional thermoplastic packaging to further protect the items and prevent tampering. We also can create packaging with trays for items such as tools, office supplies, cosmetics and beauty supplies, cleaning supplies, batteries, razors, headphones and any other product you might sell.

4. Combination Designs Are Common
Our thermoformed trays are often just one component in a packaging solution. For instance, we might design a thermoform tray with multiple cavities and once that tray has been filled with your product, place it into a custom designed clamshell or blister pack or perhaps a packaging design that includes a paperboard backing. We can create many types of combination designs, which might be just what you need.

5. A Wide Range Of Materials Can Be Used
Versatility is one of our strengths, and because we have multiple lines of thermoforming equipment, this allows us to use many thermoplastic materials. Some of the most commonly used thermoform plastics we use include PET, PETG, HDPE, ABS, PVC and PP. We also have some starch-based bio materials that we can use to create packaging and thermoformed trays. The type of plastic we use for your thermoform trays will depend on several factors, such as your budget and the type of product you create. Food products, for instance, can only be placed in packaging suitable for direct food contact. Static-sensitive products, such as electronics, also have unique packaging requirements.

If you need thermoformed trays or any type of packaging solution that includes thermoform trays, Indepak can help. Give us a call today to discuss your packaging needs. We have been a leader in the thermoforming industry since 1967, and look forward to finding an affordable, high-quality packaging solution that meets your needs.

Product Packaging: 4 Factors We Consider

When it comes to product packaging, we’ve had a lot of experience. In fact, we’ve spent the last 50 years providing customers with affordable, custom packaging. Our design team has worked with companies from virtually every industry to create innovative custom packaging. While the main purpose of any package is to hold a product, we understand there are many other factors that come into play, including the following.

1. Presentation
While there are many important aspects we consider during the creation of custom product packaging, an eye-catching design can make the difference between a consumer selecting your product in lieu of your competitor’s product. One benefit with thermoform plastics is that consumers easily can see your product, and we can display that product to its best advantage. Our team can create all types of thermoform plastic packaging, including clamshells, blisters, thermoform trays and containers with lids.

2. Protection
Thermoform plastics boast many properties that help to protect your product. For instance, many of the plastic materials we use are both shatterproof and impact-resistant. If your product is knocked off a shelf, the plastic product packaging will preserve your item far better than other types of packaging materials. Plastic product packaging also can be sealed to prevent moisture as well as tampering.

3. Cost-Containment
Keeping costs down is always a factor for any business, and using plastics for your product packaging is an ideal choice. Plastic materials are cost-effective for many reasons. In general, plastics are much more affordable than other types of packaging. As stated before, plastics protect your product, which reduces loss due to damage or theft. Plastics also are lightweight, which helps you reduce shipping costs. Because we can create smaller packages with plastic, this also allows you to ship more units per container, which further reduces your shipping and handling costs.

4. Sustainability
While the words plastic and sustainability might not seem like a natural match, virtually all of the materials we use at Indepak are recyclable. In some cases, we can create product packaging using post-consumer grade materials, starch-based bio plastics or perhaps a combination design that incorporates plastics with pulp or paperboard. Keep in mind, that the versatility of thermoforming allows us to create designs that use as small of an amount of materials as possible. We can create a blister pack or clamshell that surrounds your product precisely, eliminating the need for excessive packaging materials.

If you are in the market for product packaging, the team at Indepak is here to help. Contact us at any time and we can discuss your packaging needs. In addition to package design and product, we also offer package fulfilment services, inventory management and shipping services.

Custom Plastic Packaging: 5 Facts We Need To Know

While we write many articles providing helpful tips and facts about custom plastic packaging, sometimes we are ones who need information. Before you give us a call, we recommend that you compile some basic information about your project. Providing the following information will help provide us with a solid idea of exactly what type of custom plastic packaging you need.

1. Information About Your Product
During our first face-to-face meeting, our design team will be able to study your product in detail learning more about its design, construction and how best to display and protect the item or items. However, for our first phone call, we need to know some of the basic information about the product. For instance, what type of product do you have? Is it a food product? A tool? A battery?

Any details that you can provide about the product will be helpful, including the number of parts, the weight of each part, the size of the product and any special issues we need to address. For instance, perhaps you need packaging that is compliant for direct food contact or perhaps static or sterilization are issues that must be addressed. We have expertise in a variety of specialized markets, and our facility includes an array of thermoforming equipment to better help us meet the needs of each unique client.

2. Your Budget
Everyone is looking for ways to cut costs, and the good news about custom plastic packaging is that plastic is one of the most affordable materials on the planet. Not only are the materials themselves affordable, plastic is lightweight and we can design packaging that fits around your product precisely, eliminating excess wasteful packaging. This makes shipping easier and more affordable. Additionally, custom plastic packaging protects your product from moisture, tampering and other types of damage, all of which has a positive effect on your bottom line. Cost-containment is always a priority at Indepak. When you give us a call, let us know your budget and our team is sure to find a custom packaging solution that fits within these costs.

3. Project Timeline
During the initial phone call, give us an idea of when you need the project completed. Typically, you can expect that the development and design process will occupy the largest portion of your project’s timeline. Our expert designers work closely with customers throughout the design process to create innovative custom plastic packaging. Once designs and prototypes have been approved, our multiple lines of quality, high-speed thermoforming equipment will have your project completed as quickly as possible.

4. Types Of Materials You Prefer
Because we have a variety of equipment, we can process many types of rigid and foam materials. Our equipment can thermoform rigid materials from .008” to .080” in thickness, and foam materials from approximately 1/16″ to ¼”. We use many thermoform plastic materials, including ABS, HDPE, HIPS, OPS, PET, PETG, PP, PVC and even some starch-based bio materials.

Typically, cost, product requirements and sustainability are the three biggest factors a customer considers when selecting a material. Virtually all of the materials we use are recyclable, and we also often create combination designs, such a plastic and pulp or plastic and paperboard.

5. Additional Services You Might Need
In addition to designing and producing custom plastic packaging, we also offer many additional services, including package fulfilment. For instance, if you need RF welding or heat sealing, we have several sealing options. We also offer inventory management, and our facility includes 50,000 feet of warehouse space. We can create an inventory management system just for you.

If you need custom plastic packaging for any industry, contact Indepak today. We have been creating innovative packaging, parts, trays and much more since 1967, and we look forward to working on your project.

Custom Packaging & Thermoforming Are A Perfect Combination

When it comes to custom packaging design, thermoforming might be your best bet. Thermoforming is the process by which thin sheets of plastic are heated until malleable and then are transformed into packages or products. Just about any shape, size and style of custom packaging can be created using this process. If you need custom packaging, here are a few reasons to consider contacting our thermoforming company.

1. Let Our Experience Work For You

Indepak is a leader within the thermoforming industry, and throughout the last 45 years, we’ve worked with companies from virtually every industry sector imaginable. We’ve created products, parts and custom packaging for electronics firms, industrial firms, pharmaceutical and medical businesses, specialty food and beverage companies, agricultural firms and a myriad of retail companies. Whether you sell power tools or microwavable dinners, we can come up with the perfect custom packaging design for your product.

2. We Meet & Exceed Industry Standards

The International Organization for Standardization or ISO is a worldwide organization that has created commercial and industrial standards. We possess ISO 9001 certification, which sets standards for quality management for many different industries. This ensures our clients that we do all we can to ensure quality control at every level of our operation.

3. Thermoplastics Are Affordable & We Keep You On Budget

One of the best reasons to consider thermoplastics for your custom packaging design is the affordability factor. Thermoplastics tend to be some of the most affordable materials one can select for product packaging, but that’s not their only advantage. The light weight of thermoplastics helps to reduce your shipping costs. Thermoplastics also are quite strong, which helps reduce the damage and tampering that can affect your bottom line.

No matter what type of budget you may have, we can find a solution for your custom packaging. We use a wide range of thermoplastics, including PET, PETG, HIPS, PVC, HDPE, OPS, PP, ABS and even starch-based bio materials.

4. We Focus On Sustainability

Indepak is located in Portland, Oregon, a city known for its commitment to the environment. Sustainability is something we’ve kept in mind for decades, long before it was popular or required by law. Not only do we possess ISO 9001 certification, we also meet and exceed ISO 14001 certifications and standards. ISO 14001 standards focus on environmental management, and as a low-waste operation, we keep sustainability in mind in every aspect of our business.

For instance, any excess plastic trimmed from your custom packaging will be reused or recycled. Our design team also works diligently to create custom packaging designs that reduce the amount of packaging needed to protect your precious products. Almost all of the materials we use are recyclable, and we offer options such as post-consumer grade materials, starch-based bio-plastics and trap blisters as well as other plastic & paper or plastic & pulp combination designs.

Since 1967, we’ve been helping customers with custom packaging solutions, and we can create a custom packaging design that meets your needs and budget. Contact the team at Indepak today and let’s get started on your unique project.

Thermoform Trays & Other Products We Create

Here at Indepak, we understand that product packaging can be the heart and soul of your branding efforts. Great packaging should offer a holistic benefit to your product and brand. It shouldn’t just be functionally sound; it should also add a little flair, substance, and style to your products. That is why Indepak boasts a broad variety of packaging, ranging from thermoform trays to clamshell packaging and everything in between.

Our state-of-the-art facility churns out top-notch product packaging suitable for practically every industry. Pharmaceuticals, the food sector, laboratories, electronics firms, the agricultural industry, and many different types of retail companies to name a few. Our full line of packaging solutions includes the following items:

Thermoformed Trays
We opened our doors at Indepak back in 1967 and since that time, thermoformed trays have been a big part of our business. And for good reason. These versatile trays can be designed to hold just about any product or products and are applicable to a variety of industries, ranging from food service to pharmaceutical.

When it comes to thermoform trays, Indepak is a clear leader. Here, we leverage long-standing knowledge on thermoforming, function-specific materials and the latest techniques to come up with thermoform trays that marry well with your products. Our thermoform trays are as unique as your company.

Business-to-Business Thermoform Trays
For decades, Indepak has offered high-tech industries with thermoform tray solutions that fit the bill, including business-to-business and internal tote trays. Most of them have anti-static properties as a mainstay feature. We process them to the highest standards, with high tolerance and immaculate precision to work seamlessly with your process.

Pharmaceutical/Medical Thermoform Trays
We produce thermoform trays for downstream sterilization or non-sterile applications. Our process ensures that each product can be traced to box level.

Other Types Of Thermoform Trays & Containers
Other industries we serve include agriculture, retail, specialty foods and electronics. Most of these trays are made to agreed-upon terms, with such features as anti-static, conductive or non-abrasion. For our food industry clients, we design packaging, containers and thermoform trays to hold a myriad of food items. We can create everything from trays that hold cookies and crackers to trays for frozen dinners and much more.

Blister Packaging
Beyond thermoform trays, blister packaging is another one of our specialties. Our team of packaging engineers and designers endeavor to create blister packaging with no or minimal waste. We also opt for materials for use in packaging that either contain post-consumer grade materials or are very recyclable. This includes thermoplastics such as PET or HDPE, both of which are quite easily recycled.

Clamshell Packaging
Our clamshell containers feature a hinge along one edge, making it suitable for thousands of products from a variety of industries. For instance, a thermoformed clamshell can be used to protect and store fresh veggies, fruits, baked goodies and any dessert. Clamshell packages also can hold a variety of retail products and we offer several different sealing options to ensure that your product stays safe and secure.

Of course, we can create more than thermoplastic packaging and thermoform trays. If you need a product created from thermoplastic, give us a call. We can design just about any thermoplastic product that you might need. Thermoplastic is not only highly versatile, it’s also highly affordable, and our goal is always to provide clients with the highest qualities products at the lowest possible cost.

3 Industries That Need Thermoformed Trays

While we create all kinds of thermoformed packaging and products here at Indepak, designing custom thermoform trays is one of our specialties. Virtually every industry has a need for different types of thermoformed trays and we can create trays for any industry. Here are just three industries for which we often create these handy trays.

The Specialty Foods Industry

Food packaging, in general, definitely needs some special attention. While virtually any type of thermoplastic can be used to make thermoform trays, we must be careful to select materials suitable for coming into contact with food. Once we’ve selected the best type of thermoplastic for the job, we can begin to design the thermoform trays.

These thermoformed trays might be used to store food items such as cookies and crackers, which will then be slid into a paperboard container. We also can create thermoform trays suitable for frozen meals, and each compartment within the tray will be crafted precisely to hold each food item securely. Safety and security are always at the forefront of our design process, especially when it comes to products such as food or pharmaceutical products.

Medical & Pharmaceutical Firms

When it comes to medications, typically blister packages are the ideal choice, and these are similar to thermoformed trays in that they are designed with cavities which hold individual doses of medicines. With a blister pack, a foil or foil and paper seal is affixed to the little thermoform trays that hold the medicine and this ensures that the product is free from moisture and safe from damage or tampering.

Of course, creating packaging for medications is not the only task we accomplish for our pharmaceutical and medical clientele. We design a variety of thermoformed trays for these clients, such as those that might hold various instruments or perhaps syringes and bottles of medicine. This type of packaging is low particulate packaging and is intended for both downstream sterilization applications as well as non-sterile applications. We provide these clients with detailed record keeping and this will ensure traceability down to the box level.

Thermoformed Trays & Industrial Firms

There are many different types of thermoformed trays needed for various industrial companies, many of these trays require tight tolerances and often must possess anti-static properties. A company might need thermoform trays designed to hold a variety of parts or perhaps business-to-business tote trays for automation applications.

At Indepak, we understand the unique needs of industries such as the electronics industries or other high-tech companies and we can create thermoformed trays that will work throughout every step of your production process. Our materials include thermoplastics that are conductive as well as dissipative, and our team of expert engineers can identify the best possible materials for your thermoformed trays.

These are just a few industries that we serve and just a few companies that might have need of thermoform trays. Thermoformed trays also can be a great option for a wide variety of retail companies and even agricultural firms.

Of course, we also design many other types of packaging in addition to our thermoformed trays. We even create parts and products using thermoplastics. Because of the versatility of thermoplastics, we truly can create just about anything using these materials. If you need thermoformed trays or any other type of plastic packaging, don’t hesitate to send us an email or give us a call today and we can start developing a plan for your product packaging.

The Plastic Blister Versus The Plastic Clamshell: Which Do You Need?

Thermoplastic packaging is our passion at Indepak, and every year we design thousands of custom plastic blister packages and plastic clamshell packages. These versatile package options can be created in a wide variety of sizes and shapes to suit the needs of just about any product. Here are some facts about these packages and some information about which types of best for certain products.

First it might help to understand the differences between a plastic blister and a plastic clamshell. A plastic blister features a thermoform plastic cavity or cavities with a backing of paperboard, foil or perhaps plastic. A plastic clamshell is a container that resembles a clamshell. It is a single piece with a hinge and it can be closed with a tab or snap or even sealed closed. Technically, a plastic clamshell is simply a blister pack that folds onto itself.

These two types of packages are some of the most popular packaging styles and are used by virtually every industry. Our clients include those in food services and food production, pharmaceuticals, agriculture, electronics and retail companies.

A plastic clamshell is often a top choice for specialty food stores, bakeries, grocery stores and restaurants. Take-away containers and leftover containers typically are placed in a plastic clamshell. At the grocery store, you often see items such as berries, pastries, veggies and other fresh food items stored in a plastic clamshell. These plastic clamshells typically feature a simple tab or perhaps an adhesive label to keep them closed.

The plastic clamshell, however, can feature a more secure closing. Adhesive and strong tapes or labels can keep items secure. For instance, perhaps you need a plastic clamshell to secure a package of thumbtacks. A strong label can seal the tacks and provide helpful information about the product.

Sometimes you need a plastic clamshell with a very strong, tamper resistant seal. We can use strong adhesives or heat sealing to ensure that your product is protected. You see these types of sealed plastic clamshells all the time at a wide variety of retail stores including office supply stores, hardware stores, electronics stores and much more.

The plastic clamshell can be used to hold scissors, staplers, headphones, toys, hammers, nails, screwdrivers, flashlights, lightbulbs and about a million other items. Using a strong thermoplastic material, the plastic clamshell can keep your product secure and greatly reduce the possibility of damage.

The plastic blister is equally versatile, but slightly different in style. A blister pack often features a paperboard backing with a cavity of thermoplastic in the front. Just as with the plastic clamshell, this paperboard and plastic blister can be used to store a huge variety of items. Again, this can be used to hold pens, batteries, flash drives, toys, tools, toiletries and so much more.

A plastic blister also is often the packaging of choice for pharmaceutical companies. We’ve all taken medicines that are stored in a plastic blister. Often this blister has a strong foil seal on the back which prevents tampering. The plastic blister will be designed to keep the medicines secure but also to ensure that moisture or humidity doesn’t get into the package and compromise the quality of the medications inside.

We can design a plastic blister or a plastic clamshell specifically for your special product. We use a wide variety of thermoplastics and other materials, most of which are even recyclable. Contact us today and let’s discuss your packaging needs.

Eco-Friendly Options For Custom Food Packaging

Custom food packaging is a huge industry, and thermoplastic is often the main material used to create these packages. Many of our clients love the light weight, versatility and affordability of our thermoplastic custom food packaging, but also are looking for ways to lessen their global footprint. The good news is that we offer many different eco-friendly packaging options for our clients in food-related industries.

For restaurateurs, for example, you might need custom food packaging that allows your customers to either order a carry-out meal or tote home leftovers. Grocery stores might be in need of clamshell packaging to hold bakery goods and deli items. Food companies, of course, need custom food packaging to hold thousands of commonly used foods such as microwavable dinner, salad dressing, cookies, crackers, cereals, spices and much more.

For grocery stores and restaurants, we can create custom food packaging crafted from easy-to-recycle materials with recycled content or perhaps bio-based materials. For food product companies, we can use these aforementioned types of materials and well as easy-to-recycle thermoplastics and a combination of thermoplastic with paper or pulp or foil. It all depends on your specific product, your needs and your budget.

When it comes to custom food packaging with recycled content, this means that the materials contain either pre-consumer or post-consumer material. Pre-consumer materials are those materials that are perhaps trimmed off during the manufacturing process and never come into contact with consumers. Post-consumer materials are those thermoplastic packages or products that were handled by consumers, recycled and now the materials are being re-used for a new purpose.

For custom food packaging crafted out of bio-based materials, this simply means that all or a significant portion of the packaging was created using biological products or renewable agricultural materials. This can include plant, animal, marine or forestry materials. At Indepak, our bio-based materials are starch-based bio materials, and these can be an excellent option for some types of custom food packaging.

Custom food packaging can be created entirely out of new thermoplastics, and while all types of thermoplastic usually can be recycled, some are easier to recycle than others. For instance, many pieces of custom food packaging are created using either PET (polyethylene terephthalate) or HDPE (high-density polyethylene). These are the two types of plastic that are the most widely accepted by curbside recycling programs, which makes them easy for consumers to recycle.

Every thermoplastic has been designated with a resin identification code to indicate which type of plastic was used to create a product. PET has a resin identification code of 1 and HDPE has a resin identification code of 2. This code will be placed on your custom food packaging so that consumers and recycling centers will be able to see which type of plastic they have. PET and HDPE might be excellent choices for custom food packaging if you are searching for something affordable and easily recyclable.

At Indepak, we also can design custom food packaging using more than one recyclable material. For instance, you might have us create a package that includes paper or pulp as well as thermoplastic. Consumers can then recycle both the paper and the thermoplastic portions of the package. This provides you with a way to still enjoy the affordability and durability of thermoplastic while still reducing the amount of plastic in your packaging.

Reducing is a big part of conservation and another way that we help our clients reduce is through our careful, meticulous design process. How often have you seen a custom package that really was far too large for the product that was inside? When custom food packaging is created, our design team works diligently to ensure that there is as little waste as possible and that your custom product packaging keeps your product safe and secure and fresh while using the smallest amount of thermoplastic possible. Packaging doesn’t have to be oversized in order to effectively store and protect your product.

If you are searching for affordable, high-quality and eco-friendly custom food packaging, give Indepak a call today. We are located in the Portland area, which is a hub of environmental innovation and we always do our best to come up with custom packaging solutions that are as environmentally friendly as possible.

4 Tips For Better Custom Product Packaging

When it comes to custom product packaging, we have design packages for virtually every industry. Our clients include all sorts of retail businesses, as well as food companies, beverages companies, pharmaceutical firms, electronics companies and much more. Whether we are designing for a company that produces drills or one that creates organic cookies, we always keep the following tips in mind during the design process.

1. Packages Should Be Attractive & Informative

For many products, a pleasing custom product packaging design is highly important. An attractive design sets your product apart from the others. This is especially true with food and beverage products as well as many retail products. For items such as computer parts, hardware and more technical items, the attractiveness might be a bit less important than ensuring that the product is clearly labeled and the consumer can see what is inside.

Because most thermoplastic packages are clear, they have the advantage of showing the consumer exactly what they are buying. We can design custom plastic packaging in virtually any size or shape and also include an insert card or label that provides plenty of information about the product. For a food product, this might include ingredients and heating instructions. For an item such as a flash drive, it would include information about how many gigabytes of storage are available, etc.

Simplicity in design is something else we keep in mind. You don’t really want custom product packaging with labeling that is too cluttered or too busy. The best design is one that is functional, attractive and straight-forward.

2. Custom Product Packaging Should Be Lightweight

Heavy or excessive packaging is always something to avoid, and thermoplastic is an excellent option because of its light weight. Not only does heavy packaging or excessive custom product packaging make your product more cumbersome for your customers, it costs more to ship. Using custom plastic packaging can be a great way to reduce your overall costs. Thermoplastic is not only lightweight, it’s also quite affordable, so you can save money on both shipping and packaging costs by using custom plastic packaging.

3. Durable Packaging Is Best

Obviously, all companies want their custom product packaging to reduce the risk of product damage. Many types of thermoplastic are highly impact resistant and provide an excellent level of protection for your product. Not only can we create custom plastic packaging that is very durable, we can craft it in such a way that it fits perfectly over every nook and cranny of your product.

4. Sustainable Packaging

These days, many people are very concerned about sustainability and often make purchases with sustainability in mind. Not only do they want a high quality product, they also want to purchase the product from a company that is concerned about lessening its impact on the environment. Using custom plastic packaging can be an ideal solution.

Virtually all thermoplastics, and most of the materials we use at Indepak, are recyclable. In addition, because thermoplastics can be formed into any imaginable shape, we can create packages that cover and protect your product without any additional waste. We also can craft your custom product packaging using post-consumer grade materials, and we have starch-based bio materials to consider.

If this all seems a bit overwhelming, never fear, the team at Indepak can help you design and create custom product packaging that fulfills the goals of each of these tips. We use many different types of thermoplastic as well as combinations of paperboard, foil and thermoplastic to create custom product packaging that is attractive, durable, lightweight and as sustainable as possible.

Thermoformers & The Plastics They Use

Thermoplastics are types of plastic that can be heated up and then formed into a wide variety of products and packaging. As thermoformers, we use a wide variety of thermoplastics, including a few of the following plastics.

1. PET

PET is a commonly used thermoplastic and one of the many types that our thermoformers use here at Indepak. PET stands for polyethylene terephthalate, and it is actually a member of the polyester family of thermoplastics. It can be used to create synthetic fibers for clothing but also to create containers that are safe for food and liquids. One of the best characteristics of PET is its recyclability. This type of thermoplastic is the easiest to recycle, accepted by virtually all curbside recycling programs.

2. PETG

PETG is polyethylene terephthalate glycol-modified and this thermoplastic, while related to PET, has many special properties which make it ideally suitable for thermoformers to use during the creating of a thermoforming package or product. PETG can be thermoformed at fairly low temperatures, which reduces the amount of energy needed to create packaging and products. PETG also is quite strong and has good chemical resistance, which makes it a possible option for our customers that need either food packaging or perhaps pharmaceutical packaging.

3. ABS

When you polymerize acrylonitrile and styrene with a dash of polybutadiene, the end result is a commonly used thermoplastic known as acrylonitrile butadiene styrene or ABS. You probably think of Styrofoam when you hear the word styrene and there is a relationship. However, ABS is much stronger than styrene and can be used by thermoformers to create a wide variety of products. ABS not only is a low-cost thermoplastic, it also has excellent impact resistance and is quite easy to thermoform. We use it to create storage cases, trays, point-of-purchase displays and much more.

4. PVC

PVC, polyvinyl chloride, is a thermoplastic that is familiar to most everyone, and it is used to make those famous PVC pipes we can buy at the local hardware store. However, that is not the only product crafted out of this thermoplastic. As thermoformers, we can use PVC to create a variety of items. It might interest you to know that PVC can be used to make everything from credit cards to furniture and even bags, and those are just a few items made from PVC. Some of the advantages of PVC include its low-cost as well as its strength and durability. It is also non-corrosive, which is an obvious advantage when using PVC to create pipes.

5. OPS

OPS is yet another option that thermoformers might use. This abbreviation stands for oriented polystyrene. OPS is created by stretching a sheet of polystyrene both lengthwise and crosswise. Again, when you think about polystyrene, you probably think about a foamy-type of plastic used for disposable coffee cups and take-out containers. However, when you stretch the polystyrene, the properties change and it transforms into a rigid, highly transparent thermoplastic suitable for all sorts of trays, lids and food containers.

6. HDPE

HDPE, or high-density polyethylene, is yet another thermoplastic commonly used by thermoformers around the globe. Like many thermoplastics, HDPE is popular because of its low cost. It also provides excellent chemical resistance, and many grades of HDPE are approved by the FDA for food-related applications. HDPE is very easy to recycle, as it is widely accepted by curbside recycling programs. Our thermoformers can use it to create food storage containers and bottles as well as some types of packaging. It also is used for all sorts of interesting products such as 3-D printer filament, furniture and even hula hoops.

7. PP

PP is the abbreviation for polypropylene, and our thermoformers often use this type of thermoplastic to create all shapes and sizes of packaging. PP is highly moisture-resistant, which is extremely important for virtually every type of product. PP also offers excellent chemical resistance. It’s recyclable and when recycled, can be used to create everything from flower pots to plastic lumber and auto parts.

8. More Options

We use several other different types of thermoplastics at Indepak, including thermoplastics that contain post-consumer materials and even starch-based bioplastics. Whether you need a thermoplastic package or a product, our team of expert thermoformers can select a type of thermoplastic ideally suitable for your unique needs.