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Contract Packaging Guide: What Is It, Benefits & Types

Contract packaging refers to a company who specializes in performing packaging services for different companies and corporations. Among the things contract packagers can do is blister packing, which is used in things like pharmaceuticals, shrink-wrapping, cardboard design, and liquid packing among other things. The best packagers offer many types of packaging and can recommend different solutions to any packaging problems you may have. Contract packaging is an important component for certain industries including bulk and original equipment manufacturing, freightliner cargo shipping and industrial shipping.

Different packager companies work in different areas and provide different services. For example if you need higher-volume packaging, large contract packagers can help you. On the other hand smaller packagers can help you with a more detailed promotion. If a company can already do some of the things a packager does, then a contract packager can provide support depending on the project.

When Should You Use a Contract Packager?

There are a few things to consider in deciding if you need a packager or not.

  • If a company does not have their own packaging operation and does not plan on making one.
  • If the new product use a packaging plan that the company cannot carry out.
  • If it would be cheaper to ship the product to a packaging company to be packaged and delivered.
  • If a company does have their own packaging operation, but the new product cannot be done do to capacity or prioritization.
  • There are certain regulations surrounding the product.
  • The product is only available for a short while.
  • There has been significant downsizing in the company and they need to supplement the labor.

Benefits of Using a Contract Packager

An Increase in Flexibility

There are a lot of decisions that go into a product and the packaging that goes with it. By using an outside packaging company, you can have more freedom in how you want the packaging to look as well as how it is all put together, especially if there is a special way the packaging has to be built.

Reduced Cost

Packaging can get expensive especially if the company has their own in-house packaging facility. They have to pay to make and ship the product. Contract packagers on the other hand, make a business out packaging and it can prove to be cheaper than doing everything through the company itself. Many packaging companies offer different deals and plans to help you out.

Extra Services

Besides just your standard packaging services, many outside contractors offer different ways you can improve your packaging and product look. They can create a custom scheme for you to give you the best chance of being successful with your new product.

What Types of Product Packaging is There?

Blister Packing

Also known as blister carding, this type of packaging is best for smaller products. To create the package plastic is heat-sealed to printed cardboard. The product is placed in the middle of the two materials so you can easily see it.

Clamshell Packaging

Electronics are mostly sealed in clamshells. It’s done with plastic sheets and has better security than blister packaging because they are harder to open and are more tamper resistant.

Shrink Wrap

This is when they a product is wrapped in a plastic polymer film, like saran wrap, and then heat is applied to shrink the film and mold it around the product. Books, food, home appliances and DVDs are usually shrink wrapped.

Flow Wrapping

Also called fin sealing, this is when you wrap a product in a protective film. This is best done when a product does not need extensive presentation, such as business products and industrial products.

Dry Filling and Liquid Filling

There are packagers who package liquid or powered products as a specialty. They use specialized packaging processes such as funneling or injecting the product into bottles, bags, tubes or other containers. Glue, sugar and baby powder are just a few examples of products that use this packaging.


When it comes to actually selling the product you need labels. Each product has a unique barcode that tells the price and information of a product. Packaging companies can put this on the product for you.

RFID (Radio Frequence ID) Tagging

Theft is a problem in most stores and by having a packaging company install these for you, you can prevent theft, especially for the more expensive products. They also have tracking capabilities on larger shipments that can tell you if a product has been lost or stolen.

What to Consider When Choosing a Contract Packager

Areas of Expertise

Some contractors run the gambit of offering everything, but others specialize in a single or multiple areas. It’s best to look at different companies to see what they are experts at and see if it works for your product.


Much like expertise, different companies use different equipment depending on the type of packaging you need. Some products need to be packaged in a certain way to coincide with different regulations.


Depending on the location, you may be able to save some money on freight costs if the packager is nearer to you. On the other hand, packagers in more remote locations may be less expensive when it comes to shipping bulk products.


No matter the industry, communication is always key. You want a company that will keep in touch with you through the entire process.


Cost is always a contributing factor and can make or break a contract. Sometimes a higher quality service costs more, but you get more options, while a cheaper option could still be good quality, but with reduced options.

In Closing

Contract Packaging is a good service to use for many different reasons, and it can help a company launch a new product or deliver old ones. Since there are so many options available it can be a daunting task to find a contractor that can provide all the benefits and services you need but it can be worth it in the end. It can be cost effective and in the right circumstance earn a company even more money.

August 25th, 2019 - Posted by | Business | No Comments

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