Polythene-Bags.co.uk is brought to you by Polybags who, as the name suggests, know a thing or two about polythene bags.
Polybags are the UK's leading manufacturer of polythene packaging products. We manufacture an unrivalled range of stock polythene bags alongside a bespoke service offering personalised plastic bags tailored to an individual company's specific needs.
Our polythene bags are manufactured on site in our 50,000 sq ft factory, where we operate 13 blown-film extruders that produce the polythene used to make our bags.
Polythene extrusion is most efficient when production lines run constantly, so the Polybags factory operates around the clock to ensure that the 80 tonnes of quality polythene products we make each week are of the highest possible standard.
This 24-hour production helps us to reduce costs, which means rock-bottom prices, whilst operating 12 conversion lines - where polythene is converted into polythene bags - improves our production capacity, allowing us to schedule multiple orders to run at the same time, prioritise urgent jobs and still provide our customers with the shortest lead times on the market.
Whilst our customers don't need to know anything about the bag-conversion process - we take care of all of that for you - for those interested, here's a brief overview of how polythene is transformed into polythene bags.
The polythene used to make polythene bags starts out as a continuous tube of polythene film, which is blown from a polythene extruder. The properties of the polythene used - colour, thickness, clarity, quality, strength - will depend entirely on the type of polythene bags required.
On leaving the extrusion line, the polythene is cooled and flattened into what is known as a layflat tube, before travelling around a series of rollers to a converting station or conversion line.
Here the polythene tube is turned into a series of bags through a process of treating, printing, cutting and sealing.
Treating: If the polythene bags are to be printed with any sort of design or artwork, then the polythene film must first pass through a treatment point to prepare the surface of the polythene for printing. This essential treatment alters the chemical structure of the polythene to improve how receptive its surface is to the ink that will be placed on it during printing.
Printing: Once treated, the polythene film passes through an inline printer, which is pre-programmed to print a particular design onto the film repeatedly and at regular intervals (one print per bag). This allows Polybags customers to personalise their plastic bags with a company logo or design of their choice, printed on either one or both sides of the bag. Our printed polythene bags page has more information on our bespoke printing service.
Cutting & Sealing: Upon leaving the printing station, the polythene is simultaneously sealed and cut to the correct size and shape for the type of polythene bag in question. The polythene is secured into the correct shape with a weld at either the bottom or the sides of the bag.
- A bottom-weld bag uses the layflat tube as the sides of the bag and welds it shut at the bottom for extra strength. Bottom-weld bags tend to be stronger than side-weld bags.
- A side-weld bag is made from centrefold sheeting, which slits a layflat tube of polythene completely down one side. The fold in the sheeting is then used as the base of the bag, which is welded shut on both sides. Side-weld bags are more economical than bottom-weld bags, although not as strong.
Gussets & skirts: Nothing to do with clothing, gussets and skirts are both regular characteristics of polythene bags which help to maintain a bag's shape and strength.
- Gussets are folds in a polythene bag that open out as contents are placed in the bag to provide extra storage. Formed by folding the polythene as required after extrusion, gussets can be inserted to either the side or base of a polythene bag - or both.
- Skirts are the strip or flap of polythene that runs along the outside edge of a bag, from the seal to the edge of the bag. These can be found either at the base (bottom-weld) or side (side-weld) of the bag, or both.
Handles: Polythene bags that require handles have these cut into the bag during the conversion process. A tool the same shape and size of the handle is heated before being used to melt and punch through the polythene in the same part of each bag as it rolls into the conversion line. The same method of heat cutting can be used to add perforation holes to a bag - these are mostly used for adding ventilation to the bag.
Seals: If a polythene bag is designed to be sealed, then the seals are also added during the conversion process. Sealable bags such as mailing bags have an adhesive strip closure added to the flap of the bag which is then covered with tape or paper that peels off to expose the single-use seal. For a polythene bag to be made resealable, a more substantial sealing mechanism such as a grip seal or a zip lock must be heat-bonded to the bag. This allows the bag to be opened and closed time and time again.
Common views on polythene bag manufacturing
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Thanks to our manufacturing capacity, Polybags are able stock an unrivalled selection of over 100 million polythene bags, covering every kind of plastic bag you can think of from Antistatic to Ziplock bags.
Any shape, size, strength, thickness, colour, you name it - Polybags have got it covered. Whilst we stock hundreds of products, here are a few of our most popular polythene bags:
Carrier bags - We stock a fantastic range of carrier bags in all shapes and sizes. Coloured or clear bags, fashion or premium bags, personalised with your own design or biodegradable to help the environment, Polybags has just the carrier to suit your needs at a price to suit your budget.
Waste bags and sacks - Polybags' range of waste disposal sacks are suitable for the home or workplace. Made from recycled film but very strong, these bags cater for any type of waste, including garden rubbish, food waste, building rubble or more specialist waste such as asbestos or clinical waste.
Mailing and courier bags - As the UK's number one manufacturer, we stock a fantastic range of mailing bags to suit your postage needs, including standard mailing bags - lightweight, strong and easy-to-use with a self-sealing strip - plus more specialist mailers, including tamper-proof, bubble-lined or extra tough mailers. You can also print your own personalised mailing bags.
Retail display bags - If you need some packaging to make your products sparkle, Polybags' range of crystal-clear display bags are made from high clarity polypropylene film for that shimmering look - ideal for retailers who really want to showcase their products in a stylish manner.
Grip and zip seal bags - Grip seal bags - also known as gripper or minigrip bags - provide quick and easy storage for small- to medium-sized items, from electrical components to documents. A simple, squeezable plastic seal secures contents away from leakage or contamination. Zip seal bags perform the same function and are also resealable, but feature a pull-close external zip.
Packing bags - Our fantastic range of plain polythene bags covers a multitude of uses for packing and storage. The larger bags can protect valuable works of art or large items of furniture in storage or transit, whilst the small bags allow you to stock nuts and bolts, line boxes, pack food or even store goldfish for the local fair!
Bubble packaging - Bubble wrap and bubble bags contain a layer of protective air-cushioned film, allowing you to store or send delicate and fragile items with confidence. Ready to use and available in a range of sizes, bubble packaging will cater for items of all shapes and sizes, whilst the therapeutic properties of popping bubble-wrap are well documented.
Polythene tubing and sheeting - Poly-tubing or sheeting is the ideal product for those awkward difficult-to-wrap items. Cut just the required amount of polythene off the roll to wrap the object in question, before securing the ends with tape, bands or clips, or by heat sealing. Polythene available in a range of widths and in light, medium or heavy duty thicknesses.
Eco-friendly bags - Our wide range of environmentally-friendly products include various biodegradable bags to meet your needs, including carrier bags, mailing bags and kitchen waste bags. Biodegradable or PolyBio bags help towards a better environment, having been developed in laboratories in line with the latest research findings.
Produce and paper bags - Our range of ultra-thin produce bags made from high density film are ideal for the economic bagging and wrapping of food products and are suitable for use in markets, food stalls and catering outlets. Paper bags and take-away carriers are also available, along with shop counter polythene sheets.
Garment and laundry covers - Polybags' extensive range of garment covers, laundry collection bags and dry cleaning bags protect clothes in storage or transit, making them popular with laundries, hotels and dry cleaners. Available on the roll or loose and in clear or pre-printed form, or even personalised for your company. Duvet and linen covers also available.
Vacuum bags - Popular in the catering industry, vacuum packaging provides the perfect solution for the storage of fresh or cooked food, extending its shelf life by up to five times. Compatible with all major chamber vacuum sealers, this packaging is suitable for a range of foodstuffs, including meat, fish, cheeses, dried food and ready meals.