Production expertise

Carrier bags, in particular, offer a high degree of advertising effectiveness at low contact costs, provided that they are produced to an appropriate professional standard.

Of course, we will not leave you to deal with this alone, and will, if required, advise you on matters from product selection to final printing.

Step 1: Production

Nowadays, plastic films are manufactured predominantly through the (co)extrusion of plastic granules. The granules are melted and homogenized in an extruder. In a series of steps, further substances such as lubricants, colourants and other additives are added to the melt, as required. The plastic melt is drawn through a nozzle at the outlet of the machine as film. A frequently used method is that of blown-film extrusion (a type of blow moulding), where air is used to inflate the melt into a tube, which is brought to the exact dimensions and then reeled up after cooling. Flat film is created by cutting the tube on both sides.

For the manufacture of particularly thick films or smooth papers, calendering is the production method used.

Other forms of processing are deep-drawing and foaming for the production of, for example, cups or trays. Solid plastic bodies, such as moulded handles, are manufactured by means of injection moulding.

Step 2: Printing

The unprinted extruded rolls then go through the printing process. For most carrier bags produced in Europe, the flexographic printing method is used. Nowadays, nearly all of the plates necessary for this are also made of plastic. Depending on the printing system, both sides can be printed with up to 6, 8 or 10 colours. At the end of printing, the printed film is rewound.

Additional methods of printing are pad printing, screen printing, offset printing and gravure printing.

Step 3: Fabrication

The final step, fabrication, involves finishing the carrier bags by means of folding, stamping, bonding or heat-sealing, depending on the handle design. Blocking and perforations, which are commonly used e.g. for tear-off bags or knot bags, can also be added.

However, these are not the only options available during fabrication. For example, freezer carrier bags (made of plastic) and rain-flap bags are given their characteristic injection-moulded handles at this stage.

During the fabrication process, cotton or synthetic fabrics are sewn into cotton and long-life carrier bags respectively, and can have special labels (hang tags) added on request. Long-life carrier bags in woven designs can also be laminated with an additional layer.

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