Top 5 Materials Used in Packaging Fitments
When you are designing a box, it’s equally important to look at the inner packaging fitments. These inserts or “things that go inside the box” are just as crucial as the outer box design. While the outer box packaging makes the solid first impression, it’s inner fitments are shouldering the responsibility for delivering the inside good with stability and security. They are ones which create a long lasting impact!
The quality of materials used in the fitments is the key differentiating factor in box quality. Poor choice of fitments can result in damaged products and flimsy boxes. Are you wondering, “What material should I use for the next box I need for my corporate event?”
We’ve got you! We have put together a list of the top five materials for inner packaging fitments. These materials have been rated on four key parameters:
Let’s begin, shall we?
1. Corrugated Fitments:
Corrugated Fitments are the most commonly used materials in manufacturing of fitments and inserts. Depending on the use case, either 3 ply or 5 ply fitment sheets are used. Corrugated fitments are made of recycled materials and score high in terms of sustainability. They are usually 30% less expensive as compared to other materials, however you may have to buy them in larger quantities.
Corrugated fitments, inserts, and dividers provide a lot of sturdiness to the contents and can withstand rough transportation as well. They are ideal for products such as glass jars, machine parts, etc.
They have their limitations with respect to colour availability, however they can be offset printed for larger quantities or digitally printed for shorter quantities.
Here’s the rating chart for Corrugated fitments.
2. Rigid Board Fitments:
Rigid board fitments are an extremely popular choice when manufacturing fitments for packaging. Rigid fitments are frequently used in packaging for cosmetics, FMCG, jewelry, and other luxury items. Many times they are also used in conjunction with XLPE or EPE foam fitments.
Rigid board, commonly known in India as Putha Board, is made of recycled pulp and scores high in the sustainability index.
The price of rigid board fitments is slightly higher that of corrugated sheets. However, the strength and stability they provide is worth the higher price point. If we choose the appropriate thickness of board for making the fitments, then a very superior level of strength and stability can be achieved in the packaging.
The best part about rigid board fitments is that they are completely customizable. Any type of printed or colour sheets can be pasted on top of these rigid fitments.
3. Foam Fitments :
Foam based fitments are widely used in packaging of glass, machine tools, and other high-value items. Currently, two of the most commonly available foam fitments are —- XLPE foam or EPE foam.
As expected, they don’t score well on the sustainability scale. They are harmful to the environment since they are non-biodegradable. But, they are the most sturdy and safe fitment option out there.
And, since they are the most sturdy option available in the market, their price is always on the higher side. We would like to highlight that XLPE foam fitments are 40% more expensive than EPE foam fitments.
Lastly, the customisation of these fitments is very expensive. They generally are available in few colour options – white, black, pink and blue. In order to customise them further, they need a layer of paper or paperboard on top of them.
4. Bagasse Fitments
Bagasse is a dry fibrous residue that is generated after extraction of sugar from sugarcane. Nowadays, Bagasse is being used extensively in the making paper moulded fitments and dividers for various packaging applications.
You might be aware of bagasse plates and other recyclable cutlery that are widely used today. Bagasse fitments or inserts are slowly starting to trend in the packaging industry as well.
Bagasse is probably the most eco-friendly material amongst the entire list of fitments mentioned here. It is 100% recyclable. However, the costs associated with making a bagasse mould and then manufacturing these fitments is on the higher end when compared to other paper-based or plastic fitments.
Customization of colours in bagasse fitments is extremely difficult and require extremely large quantities to justify the expense. From a durability standpoint, bagasse fitments are sturdy enough to withstand pressure, however not as strong when compared to foam or rigid board fitments.
5. Paper Fitments :
Paper or paperboard fitments are the most pocket friendly fitment option (Probably 25% cheaper than rigid board). These are easy to source and manufacture. Paper fitments are generally made of recycled paper. But, it’s important to remember that they do not provide as much stability as other material options.
The parameter where paper fitments beats the competition is customization. All sorts of customizations are possible with paper fitments, including offset printing, digital printing, foiling, and embossing. So if you are looking for something really unique and tailored to your brand, then paper fitments might be your best bet.