<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=216539877280951&ev=PageView&noscript=1" /> How Is Aluminum Foil Used For Packaging? | DymaPak

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We all know that aluminum foil is a proven solution for packaging technology, logistics, branding flexibility, and more — but what is it about this material that has allowed it to stand the test of time?

In this article, let’s examine how aluminum foil is used for packaging in the fast-paced environment of modern commerce. We’ll also cover how it differs from other materials, and we’ll discuss some of the limitations that come with its use.

With these product details, you’ll have a better understanding of what makes aluminum foil so versatile and timeless — plus how it can benefit your brand in a range of different applications.

 

How Is Foil Used in Packaging?

When most of us hear “aluminum foil,” we think of the trusty little roll of Reynolds Wrap that sits in our kitchen cabinets and drawers. An alternative to plastic wrap and parchment paper, non-stick aluminum foil is always ready to aid in easy prep and wrapping food.

Heavy-duty aluminum foil is also used in food storage to help prevent freezer burn. Additionally, it’s used in high-heat grills and in ovens in many American households, thanks to the non-stick coating on its dull side.

But in the world of product packaging, aluminum foil is a true game-changer. Everything from individually-wrapped snacks to large-scale shipments of sensitive materials and chemicals can be protected by aluminum foil sheets.

The material acts as a total barrier to moisture, light, and oxygen — all of which can make or break a product’s stability and quality when being shipped and stored. Those unwanted elements can come together in a perfect storm of oxidation and bacteria growth, causing fats to become rancid and products to be ruined on their way to their destination.

Luckily, aluminum foil packaging allows producers to lock in flavors and other key properties of their products. This helps to maintain optimal conditions along the supply chain and ensure customer satisfaction.

As a result, foil products are used broadly across food and pharmaceutical packaging.

 

Why Don’t We Use Tin Foil Anymore?

While aluminum foil is sometimes referred to as tin foil, the two materials are distinct in their composition and capabilities.

Tin foil, a precursor to aluminum foil invented before the turn of the 20th century, is rarely ever used anymore, even though the name serves as a convenient shorthand.

Let’s find out why we no longer rely on tin foil for packaging and household tasks, and why aluminum foil remains the most widely-used and trusted material of its kind.

 

Tin Foil vs. Aluminum Foil

Introduced in the late 19th century during a period of immense industrial progress, tin foil was far more crude and limited in function than the best-seller aluminum foil we know today.

While tin foil was a welcome change from other methods of packaging and preservations, it had notable downsides, including a lack of malleability and the noticeable taste it left on foods.

Thankfully, innovators found a workable alternative with aluminum foil just a few decades later, accomplishing what tin foil set out to do and improving the overall product. Aluminum was more flexible, more cost-effective, and imparted no taste onto products. Standard aluminum foil could also be used more widely in everything from industrial applications to common household needs such as lining a baking pan.

To this day, aluminum foil offers the highest standard of protection and reliability, making it the best in class.

 

Benefits of Aluminum Foil

Without diving too deep into the unique chemical attributes of aluminum, it’s worth exploring the benefits of this type of foil in the modern packaging industry.

Below, we’ll go through the key characteristics of aluminum foil and note which applications are most relevant to certain industries at various stages of the supply chain.

 

Availability

Sourcing and procurement are a critical part of packaging, shipping, fulfillment, and other components of the business cycle. If a business doesn’t have a reliable source of packaging materials — whether for food, pharmaceuticals, or other sensitive products — delays will pile up and resources will be wasted.

The good news is that the widespread availability of affordable aluminum allows companies of all sizes to meet their shipping and packaging needs within a short timeframe and reasonable budget.

 

Longevity

When it comes to bringing perishable goods to market in a safe and efficient way, aluminum foil has little competition. Rivaled only by polyethylene compounds such as Mylar, aluminum exhibits elite longevity in its structure and effectiveness. It preserves products for far longer than other solutions, and with foods and pharmaceuticals, it broadens the window of opportunity for sales and consumption.

Consider the impact of a material like aluminum foil from the standpoint of a business owner who wants products to last longer on store shelves and give customers a wider timeframe in which to enjoy those products at home.

 

Environmental Sustainability

It’s not just a buzzword. Environmental awareness is front of mind for consumers and producers alike, and this means addressing every aspect of the supply chain for increased sustainability.

Again, aluminum foil shines in this regard, offering a low-impact production footprint and being reusable and fully recyclable. If used carefully in the kitchen, this foil can indeed be used more than once.

The same principle works for aluminum foil safe-seal baggies and other packaging solutions, which encourage customers to think twice about throwing things away.

In the long run, the use of aluminum foil is arguably better for the environment than plastic-based materials, which rely heavily on oil, natural gas, and water.

 

Versatility

We’ve come a long way since the basic use cases for aluminum foil, so it’s time to think beyond the candy wrappers and baking sheets. Modern aluminum foil can be highly customized for various packaging functions, giving manufacturers and marketers more versatility than ever.

Aluminum now allows for innovative, high-utility packaging across industries like food, supplements, pharma, nutraceuticals, cannabis dispensaries, and more. Packaging technology now also includes child-resistant features that help ensure the protection of families at home.

 

High Degree of Barrier Protection

Aluminum foil has few rivals when it’s produced with the appropriate thickness and equipped with the right barrier mechanisms.

This can help companies create safe, food-grade packaging that seals tight and minimizes damage and waste. That extra degree of protection delivers peace of mind, assurance, and other intangibles that are integral to a satisfied customer base.

 

Lightweight

Shipping costs have skyrocketed along with all other aspects of the supply chain, so any way to lighten the load is a benefit to companies everywhere. Aluminum foil offers just that, reducing the weight of shipments with space-efficient and lightweight materials.

Business owners know the impact of just a few saved ounces per shipment when the numbers are crunched. With aluminum, that payoff is a sure thing.

 

Things You Should Never Do With Aluminum Foil

Despite its many advantages, there are a few quick things you should never do with your aluminum foil roll at home or in food service settings.

Aluminum foil should never be used in a microwave oven (though it is approved to use in most toaster ovens). To be safe, make sure to read the manufacturer’s instructions on your appliance before use.

Although foil is oven-safe, don’t use foil in direct contact with food when baking in your cookware, or you may end up with unevenly baked goods. Skip using foil as an oven liner and instead use a sheet of foil, shiny side up, on the oven rack below the drippy pie or other item.

Finally, despite popular belief, wrapping baked potatoes in foil does not decrease baking time.

 

Conclusion

From tins and pouches to large-scale packaging needs, aluminum foil is a clear winner — even after a hundred years in the spotlight.

Find out how you can improve your packaging, branding, and overall business success with our visually appealing, child-resistant packaging. Or, request a quote today to learn more about Dymapak’s many options.

 

Sources:

Things You Shouldn’t Do With Aluminum Foil | AllRecipes

Key Trends in Packaging Industry | Smithers

Alufoil’s History | European Aluminum Foil Association