The price of zipper plastic bags has been increasing for over a year. Hurricanes Katrina and Rita knocked out or severely damaged plastic manufacturers who produce key resins which made the price climb even higher. Even though those events happened about a year ago, their effects can still be felt today. Further, with the instability in the Middle East, there is no telling where the price of zipper plastic bags, also known as zip seal bags, will go as oil is a critical ingredient With this in mind here are 10 quick tips you can use to minimize the impact on your operation and reduce your cost.
1. Experiment with different film thicknesses. Many companies feel they get better protection with a thicker bag. This is not necessarily the case. The material used to make your zip seal bags determines the strength and barrier properties, not the thickness. Thicker does not necessarily mean better.
2. Rely on your manufacturer of zipper plastic bags for guidance. These are unique times in the plastic industry and having the direction of your packaging professional can make a huge difference. Your packaging professional can help you determine the right film for each of your applications. Often, companies will use a one-size-fits-all approach for their zip seal bags and they tend to spend more money than they need to.
3. Ask for a lead time in writing from your plastic bag manufacturer with your order confirmation. While this won’t guarantee when your zipper plastic bags will ship, a reputable firm can be fairly close in their estimate. Knowing when your zip seal bags are supposed to arrive will help you manage your inventory and minimize any chance of running out.
4. Make contingency plans in case your plastic manufacturer cannot get resin for your zip seal bags. A few years ago this was unheard of, but today this is a very real possibility. Your supplier should have back up plants they can go to in a pinch. Most importantly, discuss this with your packaging professional. They need to know your zipper plastic bag needs so they can help you before you run out.
5. Consider different plastic film choices for your zip seal bags. Blending different resins can increase the strength of your plastic bags and allow you to use a thinner plastic film.
6. Try using stock zipper plastic bags. There are many stock sizes available which are run in extremely high volumes. You’ll save money when you can use stock zip seal bags instead of a custom size.
7. Order an additional month of material. Zipper plastic bags take up a small amount of space compared to other packaging products. Ordering a slightly larger quantity will reduce the price of them as well.
8. Understand how to determine the right size zip seal bags for your application. While this may sound obvious, many companies purchase zip seal bags much larger than they need. Rely on your plastic bag manufacturer and/or packaging professional for help.
9. Consider an Auto Replenishment Program. Have your supplier keep a certain number of zipper plastic bags on their floor at all times. As soon as you release them, they’ll automatically run a new order for replenishment.
10. Consider ordering a blanket of zip seal bags and have your plastic bag manufacturer run and hold them. This will lock in your pricing, minimize the lead time, and by committing to a larger order will reduce your total cost.