Pet Food Packaging Design for Plastic Bags: Everything You Need to Know

Dec 7, 2023

When it comes to our furry friends, we want nothing but the best. From selecting nutritious pet food to ensuring its freshness and quality, packaging plays a vital role in meeting these needs.

Here, we will explore the importance of pet food packaging and how pet food packaging design and innovative solutions are revolutionizing the industry.

What is Pet Food Packaging?

Pet food packaging refers to the materials and designs used to package and present pet food products.

pet food packagingIt includes various types of containers, bags, pouches, cans, and other packaging formats specifically designed to store and protect pet food.

The packaging serves multiple purposes, such as preserving the freshness and quality of the food, providing convenient storage and handling, and conveying important information to consumers, such as nutritional facts, feeding guidelines, and brand identity.

Pet food packaging is crucial in ensuring the safety, appeal, and functionality of the products, while also meeting industry regulations and consumer expectations.

How to Design A Pet Food Packaging Bag

The right packaging keeps pet food fresh and maintains its nutritional value. Advanced barrier materials and technologies help prevent moisture, oxygen, and light from degrading the food, ensuring its quality and prolonging its shelf life.

From dry kibble to moist treats, packaging solutions are tailored to meet the specific needs of different pet food products.

1, Evaluating Bag Formats for Your Pet Food Products

As you evaluate the best bag design for containing your pet food formulations, possibilities to explore are:

  • Stand Up Pouches
    pet treats packagingStand-up pouches feature a bottom gusset that enables the pouch to rest in an upright, self-supporting position on retail shelves. This orientation provides enhanced visibility for brands and easier access for consumers compared to lying flat.

    They are commonly employed for packaging dry pet foods and treats. Their laminated construction delivers robust barrier protection against moisture, oxygen and light exposure, which helps maintain the quality and freshness of kibble and chews.

  • Flat Bottom Bags
    dog food bagFlat bottom bags are commonly used to pack pet food due to their various advantages.

    The flat bottom design offers enhanced stability, allowing the bag to stand upright and preventing tipping or spilling. It provides ample space for branding and product information, making it an attractive option for marketing.

    Additionally, the flat bottom design enables efficient display and storage, maximizing shelf space and visibility in retail environments.

    They are often used for larger quantities of dry pet food or treats, offering a flexible and space-efficient packaging solution.

  • Quad Seal Bags
    pet food bagsQuad seal bags with excellent shelf presence and functional benefits are often used to pack pet food.

    They offer enhanced structural integrity, providing better protection for the contents and reducing the risk of punctures or tears during handling and transportation.

    These pouches also allow for efficient packing and stacking, maximizing storage space.

    The quad seal design provides a large printable surface area, making it ideal for branding and product information.

  • Flat Pouches
    Flat pouches such as fin seal pouches and 3-side seal pouches are versatile and cost-effective packaging options.

    They are typically used for single-serve portions of wet or semi-moist pet food and treats.

    Flat pouches can be easily sealed and offer a compact and lightweight packaging solution.

  • Spout PouchesSpouted pouches have a built-in spout or fitment, making them suitable for liquid or semi-liquid pet food products.

    The spout allows for controlled pouring and easy serving, making them popular for wet or liquid pet food, sauces, and gravies.

When choosing the right pouch type for pet food products, factors such as product characteristics, shelf life requirements, convenience features, and branding considerations should be taken into account.

Customizable options are available to meet specific packaging needs and to enhance product appeal on the store shelves.

Dry Pet Food Packaging

Dry pet food, treats, and snacks.

  • Flat Bottom Bags: Accommodate weights ranging from 2-50Kgs. Allowing stand upright.
  • Quad Seal Pouches: For heavy duty with a large printable surface area, maximizing storage space.
  • Stand Up Pouches: Rest in an upright. High barrier. Easy to use.
  • Wet Pet Food Packaging

    Wet Pet Food, Soups, and Sauces.

  • Stand Up Pouches
  • Spout Pouches: With spout and fitments that are easy to feed.
  • Flat Pouches: Fin seal pouches or 3-side seal pouches
  • Semi-Moist Treat Packaging

  • Stand Up Pouches
  • Flat Pouches: Fin seal pouches or 3-side seal pouches
  • Freeze-Dried Pet Food Packaging

    Dehydrated Food Packaging

  • Stand Up Pouches
  • Flat Pouches: Fin seal pouches or 3-side seal pouches
  • Single-Serve Portion Packaging

    Provide individual portion sizes for pets, ensuring convenience and freshness. Allowing pet owners to easily feed their pets without the need for additional food storage

  • Stand Up Pouches
  • Flat Pouches: Fin seal pouches or 3-side seal pouches
  • 2, Determining the Best Pet Food Packaging Material

    When selecting materials for pet food packaging bags, it’s important to conduct a well-rounded evaluation process that considers key performance criteria.

    • Barrier qualities – How well does the material prevent transmission of oxygen, moisture and odors?
    • Durability and strength – Can it withstand typical handling and transport stresses without tearing or punctures?
    • Heat sealing ability – Will the material form reliable, leak-proof seals consistently over production runs?
    • Regulatory compliance – Does the composition meet all food contact requirements?
    • Processing efficiency – How smoothly does the material perform on form-fill-seal lines?
    • Sustainability profile – Are end-of-life options like recycling or composting possible?
    • Cost implications – What value does the material provide relative to expenses?

    For pet food brands exploring alternative packaging substrates to traditional plastics, extensive pre-production testing in close cooperation with manufacturing experts is paramount.

    This collaborative evaluation of candidate materials helps validate their barrier properties and ability to maintain the product’s quality, texture, nutritional integrity, and freshness up until the designated best-before date.

    Partnering closely with suppliers experienced in evaluating novel substrates against rigorous performance standards helps de-risk transitions to more sustainable solutions while still meeting consumer and regulatory expectations for food safety and shelf life.

    Thorough cross-functional collaboration is important to successfully transition pet food packaging to new materials. According to the weight of pet food products, insight material includes:

    Over 20Kgs
  • NY/NY/PE
  • 10-20Kgs
  • Matt Varnish/PET/AL/NY/PE
  • NY/ (White) PE
  • 1-20Kgs
  • Within 1Kg
  • PET/PE
  • Sustainability
  • PE/PE
  • KanRe single-layer material series
  • 3, Use an Inviting Visual Style

    Consider employing appealing visual design elements, illustrations and informative graphics to engage customers.

    Strategically incorporating vibrant colors, illustrations and digestible product details can attract attention and invitingly communicate key benefits.

    At KDW, we can provide 10-color gravure printing, allowing for a wide variety of vibrant color options. This enriched palette creates greater visual appeal and attractiveness for packaging designs.

    The expanded color range enabled by our gravure printing capabilities enhances brands’ ability to creatively convey their message and stand out on shelves through sophisticated aesthetic touches.

    4, Make the Pet Food Packaging Design User-Friendly

    When designing your pet food packaging, take into account your target customers and what would attract them to the product.

    Before designing, evaluate how the item will be used and make the experience as seamless as possible.

    For example, if the contents need pouring, incorporate a handle for ease of use. If the product is meant for multiple uses, ensure the packaging can be conveniently resealed between uses.

    Conducting user research upfront will provide insights for optimizing usability.

    • Tear Notches
      Include tear notches, such as normal type tear notch, “-” type tear notch, Dot tear notch, and laser score line to tear the pouch in straight, so owners don’t need scissors.
    • Zippers
      Add zippers such as PTC zipper, Butterfly zipper/pocket zipper/Front zipper, Velcro zipper, and Slider zipper to reusable and keep pet food fresh.
    • Hang hole
      Make a hang hole for heavy packaging for easy delivery for customers.
    • Clear Windom
      A clear window allows customers to see what your pet food product looks like for themselves. 

    Consider a one-handed operation for busy pet parents to open, fill bowls and reseal. Test different bag/pouch styles for the best grip, stability and handling during scooping. Gather owner feedback through surveys to refine designs that meet their needs.

    The goal is to anticipate owners’ needs and remove any barriers to a seamless feeding experience.

    5, Consider the Eco-Friendly Packaging

    When designing packaging, focus not only on product protection but waste reduction through sustainable materials selection.

    More customers care about how their purchases affect the environment. As a business, you should make packaging that not only keeps the product safe but also reduces waste.

    One way is to take out anything extra that isn’t needed, like extra plastic, boxes or bags. Your package should only have what is important to protect the item and show your brand.

    Try using recycled or sustainable materials when possible. Make sure your package is simple but still strong. This helps the planet without costing more or working less well.

    Making green packaging shows customers you care about the Earth. It helps them feel good about buying from you.

    Sustainable Pet Food Packaging

    As environmental awareness increases, sustainable packaging has become an important trend in the pet food industry. More and more people care about helping the environment. Using sustainable practices not only reduces environmental impact but also enhances brand image, appealing to more conscious consumers.

    Material selection is key

    Many brands now use single-layer materials like polyethylene for reusability. Composite materials like aluminum foil are avoided for easier recyclability. Post-consumer recycled content is also gaining popularity.

    KanRe HLE, the mono-PE material developed by KDW, is making important contributions to sustainable pet food packaging.

    KanRe HLE uses a single polyethylene resin which allows for simplified recycling. Without multiple material layers, it’s easier to separate and recover the plastic after use. This advances recycling efforts and the shift to a circular economy model.

    Thickness 70-250 micron
    Residual Solvent ≤5.0 mg/m2
    WVTR ≤8.0 g/m2/24h
    OTR ≤2000 ml/m2/24h
    Heatsealing Strength ≥20 N/15mm
    Pressure Resistance Test 50kg*1min no leakage
    Drop Test 1.0m*2times no leakage
    By offering an effective yet sustainable packaging solution, KDW enables brand owners to meet consumer demand for eco-friendly options. KanRe HLE demonstrates how environmental stewardship and business priorities can be aligned through innovative product development.

    To meet the varying needs of pet foods and their sustainable packaging requirements, KDW offers a range of single-layer material solutions.

    Depending on the specific product characteristics and processing conditions, their portfolio includes mono-PE, mono-PP and mono-BOPP options customized to each application.

    By tailoring the resin formulation and package design to the individual product specs, KDW can ensure optimal barrier protection, shelf life and recyclability. This adaptive approach helps brands fulfill sustainability goals while addressing the unique demands of their pet nutrition offerings.

    Simple Design

    Design-wise, unnecessary additional packaging is eliminated, such as excess plastic or cardboard boxes. Streamlined designs significantly cut down on waste. Features like easy-open/reseal functions minimize the need for tools.

    Green Production Processing

    Greener production processes employ non-toxic, heavy metal-free water-based inks and solventless heat sealing techniques for recyclability. On-pack labels inform consumers how to properly dispose of packaging.

    Sustainable materials, design innovations and manufacturing practices effectively diminish pet food packaging’s environmental footprint while strengthening brand perception among eco-minded shoppers. This integrated approach paves the way for continued industry progress.

    Large Dog Food Bag

    The market for large dog food bags is robust due to the growing population of large breed dogs. As more large breed dogs are being adopted and raised, especially guardian breeds, there is significant market demand for extra-large bags of kibble.

    Households with large dog breeds such as Labradors, German Shepherds, and other large dogs require bags with higher capacities.

    With the population of large dogs continuing to expand, opportunities exist to further develop functional and sustainable packaging formats and increase bag sizes.

    KDW has invested in a large bag machine for large pet food bags.large dog food bag

    • It is suitable for laminated film with 80~200 microns thickness
    • 3-Sides Seal Bag, Quad Seal Bag, and Flat Bottom Bag are capable.
    • Available Fitments: Zippers (Press-to Close / Aplix / Slider) / Built-In Handle
    • Max Dimensions: Length 1000mm, Width 420mm, Gusset 200mm
    • Accommodate weights ranging from 2-50Kgs (that is 110lb)

    How Dog Food Bag Help Your Dog to Eat?

    Eating is important for dogs to be healthy. Dogs have a very acute sense of smell, and bad odors can reduce their appetite. While plastic bags inherently have smells that humans can’t detect, dogs certainly can.

    dog food bag help dog to eat

    One way to ensure dogs don’t lose their appetite due to unpleasant odors is to use low-odor plastic films for dog food packaging. These specialized materials are designed to minimize smells that dogs find off-putting.

    In product development, packaging film manufacturers test various resin formulations and barrier technologies to identify options with minimal odor profiles. Films are analyzed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and other techniques to measure odor compounds at extremely low levels imperceptible to humans.

    Bags made with low odor films help keep a dog’s food fresher by better blocking smells from escaping or external odors from seeping in. This preserves the appealing aromas that stimulate a dog’s natural hunger cues.

    By selecting packaging films rigorously tested for low odor performance, brands can feel confident their bags won’t be acting as turn-offs for dogs at mealtimes. It’s a subtle but important factor in optimizing canine appetite and ensuring nutritious food is well consumed.

    Pet Food Packaging Trends

    The pet food packaging market is poised for remarkable growth, with estimations projecting a surge from USD 11.38 billion in 2022 to an estimated USD 22.08 billion by 2032, at a steady 6.9% CAGR (2023–2032) [Towards Packaging Study].

    pet food packaging market size
    As the pet food packaging market size continues to grow, here are some trends we may see in pet food packaging:

    • Increased Sustainability
      Brands will face more pressure to use eco-friendly materials like bioplastics, paper and compostable alternatives to reduce waste. Lightweighting of packaging will also grow.
    • More Customized Options
      Packaging will allow the personalization of pet food for traits, ages and dietary needs. Different formats like pouches or cans will cater to individual pets.
    • Advanced Technology Features
      Smart labels with QR codes, apps for reordering and interactive AR will enhance engagement. Packs may have sensors to monitor freshness.
    • Greater Transparency
      Detailed ingredient and sourcing information addressing safety, ethics and allergens will be prominently displayed. Windows may show actual contents.
    • Emphasis on convenience
      Easily resealable, portable and microwavable packaging will suit busy lifestyles. Single portions in pouches are gaining.
    • Focus on wellness
      Functional ingredients and probiotics will be highlighted. Graphics portraying health benefits may influence shopping decisions.

    As the market grows the packaging serving pet food will need to keep pace with owners’ demands for sustainability, convenience when feeding pets, customization options, and transparency about product contents. Innovation in materials and features will be important to satisfy pet parents and support the industry’s continued expansion.

    The trends reflect the current market landscape, but it’s important to note that trends can evolve and change over time. Staying updated with industry insights and consumer preferences is essential to adapt to the latest pet food packaging trends.

    Start With KDW

    Please contact us for more info of the flexible packaing, our expert term will get in touch with you timely.

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