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    Polypropylene is more eco-friendly than cellophane, significantly cheaper, has a high crystal-clear clarity and makes better quality, stronger display bags.

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The use of retail display bags

Retailers everywhere have two important concerns when it comes to displaying their products:

  1. presenting their products to customers in the most attractive way possible
  2. maintaining the quality of the product and, in the case of food, preserving its freshness

By addressing these concerns, the retailer increases the likelihood of customers buying their products, thereby increasing their takings.

One of the most popular methods of presenting products in the retail environment is through the use of display bags. Display bags are versatile, attractive bags with a wide variety of uses, from presenting clothes to gift cards and flowers to food but, whatever the product, the ultimate aim for the retailer remains the same - impress the customer!

Display bags are traditionally made from either cellophane or polypropylene, two materials which, whilst similar, have their own important characteristics which affect the all-important presentation of the products concerned.

Why use polypropylene bags instead of cellophane bags?

Most people have heard of cellophane - a thin, transparent paper-like sheet made of processed cellulose that has high clarity. Cellophane is heat sealable and is able to resist moisture and other contaminants whilst keeping products fresh, which makes it a good product for displaying food and other retail goods.

Polypropylene is a less well know product, but it offers an excellent alternative to cellophane for use in display bags or film, offering many of the same benefits as polythene with some added ones thrown in.

Polypropylene is similar in appearance to cellophane but, whereas cellophane is a paper-based material, polypropylene is a plastic polymer, similar in many ways to polyethylene - the material traditionally used to make so-called polythene bags.

Like cellophane, polypropylene is heat-sealable and non-porous, providing an excellent barrier against moisture and other contaminants. As a result, polypropylene - also know as PP or Poly-Prop - is highly effective at keeping food fresh and meets the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) specifications for food content.

While similar to cellophane, polypropylene has a number of distinct advantages over its packaging ‘cousin', namely:

Price - the most obvious difference is that polypropylene does the same - or better - job than cellophane but is cheaper, offering great value for money

Clarity - polypropylene is an exceptionally clear material, providing higher clarity than cellophane. Polypropylene is typically used when maximum clarity is required, e.g. when packaging sweets, greeting cards, etc. The material's superb, crystal clear clarity and extra shine enhances the display of any product or design.

Strength - Polypropylene feels stronger and stiffer than cellophane when comparing bags/sheets of the same thickness. Cellophane is transparent but the film is thin and creases easily.

Temperature-resistance - Polypropylene has a better resistance to high temperatures, as it does not start to soften until approximately 270 degrees Fahrenheit

These factors combine to make polypropylene the most popular material for display bags, to enhance product presentation whilst preserving freshness. It is the perfect material for a range of packaging, from greeting cards to food.

With green issues increasingly high on the public agenda, the fact that cellophane is a natural product and 100% biodegradable has, of late, made it more popular as a food wrapping with many people.

However, whilst the product itself is organic, the manufacturing of cellophane is a toxic process. The process - which involves the production and extrusion of viscose, before re-converting it into cellulose - produces carbon disulfide and other polluting by-products.

Although plastic packaging often experiences a bad press, it is actually one of the most efficient forms of packaging, as it has both a very low carbon footprint and the ability to be recycled. Polypropylene is more eco-friendly to manufacture than cellophane. It is totally non-toxic for disposal and is also 100% recyclable.

Say 'I love you' with flowers in crystal clear wrapping

FlowersFlowers are the perfect way to say 'I love you' to the special one in your life, a family member or loved one. Whether for a special occasion such as Valentine's Day, a wedding anniversary, a birthday or Mother's Day, or just to make someone smile at any time of year, flowers make people feel special and loved.

So, with such a simple but powerful gift, you want a simple but powerful way of making the flowers look their absolute best and putting all of the focus on the gift itself, which is why they should be wrapped in crystal clear flower sleeves.

Made from polypropylene, these high clarity sleeves are perfect for any flowers, from a single stem to a massive bouquet. Offering a fantastic sheen and excellent strength and designed for counter-top use and easy storage, flower sleeves are perfect for specialist florists and other gift retailers who sell flowers.

So make sure ultra-clear polypropylene wrapping makes your flowers shine so that the message 'I love you' is as crystal clear as the sleeves themselves.

Common uses of high-clarity polypropylene in the retail sector

Polypropylene is used to enhance the display of a wide range of products. Here are just a few of the ways it is used:

  • Greeting card bags
  • Flower sleeves
  • Candy sweet bags
  • Floral/basket wrap
  • Media packaging (e.g. CDs, DVDs)
  • Magazine overwrapping
  • Clear wrapping film
  • Clothing display bags (e.g. t-shirts, shirts, dresses)
  • Food display bags (e.g. sandwiches, pastries, cakes, cookies)
  • Art display bags (e.g. portraits, prints, calendars)