Industrial food packaging must satisfy certain conditions to be optimal and safe. This post gives explains the key points so you don’t have to worry about it.

What you need to know for correct industrial food packaging

The main characteristic of industrial food packaging is that it is used on a large scale. And, as in packaging for beverages, guidelines must be followed. For this reason, and more than in other areas, you must act systematically and clearly establish the what, the how and the when. Here we provide you with more details, take note:

1. Define in advance the type of packaging you require

The first thing you need to know is what type of packaging you need. This is because there are three types of industrial packaging in the food industry: primary, secondary and tertiary. In some cases, you will have to combine several in the same load.

Primary packaging includes items such as cans, tetrabriks or adjustable bags, because they are in direct contact with the goods. Secondary packaging acts as a second layer, such as boxes of ready-to-eat foods. Finally, tertiary packaging, refers mainly to palletizing.

It is perfectly possible that the packaging for the same product uses primary, secondary and tertiary packaging. Think, for example, of a precooked lasagna in cardboard packaging that serves as a box.

2. Make sure the cargo is well protected

The second element to check is that your load is well protected. This is a key issue, since impacts can spoil it. Baling is particularly important here, because it makes the load more stable. A baling machine such as the Saturn S8 can help you protect the load correctly and avoid major problems.

Palletizing, if done professionally, should not be complicated. But the truth is that automation is very important when baling. It saves money and guarantees the quality of the result.

3. Choose the right packaging material

The choice of the appropriate material depends on several factors, although priority must be given to the preservation of the food and its proper positioning. It is also important to make sure that there is no effect on the flavor (this happens with some packaging) and that it is waterproof. In this regard, vacuum packaging is a good option, as well as certain types of cardboard and cling film.

The idea is clear: adapt the packaging to the characteristics of the product you are selling. And, of course, you shouldn’t lose sight of issues such as sales policy, because packaging is one more asset for marketing your product.

4. Good space management

One fundamental aspect of industrial packaging is to ensure that you use space correctly. To do this, there are three tips to follow: palletize the load, distribute it well and bale it afterwards. This will make sorting easier and allow you to make the best use of the available space, without harming the product’s characteristics and properties.

You have to think about warehouses, or loading and unloading docks. At the end of the day, space is one more asset when it comes to marketing the product and making a profit. It is therefore very positive to apply appropriate measures and take this into account.

5. Find out about the regulations in your destination country

The material standards of the destination are essential. In this case, we can refer to the different types of packaging. Palletizing is not too complicated, since the European pallet is widely accepted (UNE-EN standard 13698-1:2003), while for primary and secondary packaging you should check the requirements of each country, especially for exports. This will save you problems and returns at destination.

In this case, and if you have any doubts, it is preferable to get information beforehand. There is usually not too much of a problem in the European Union and the United Kingdom, as legislation tends to be harmonized, but there may be complications with transoceanic exports.

6. Control food traceability

Food traceability is another essential point to enhance guarantees and quality. A necessary step is to properly label all pallets and batches that you ship. If there is an issue, it will be easy for you to identify it and separate the problem load from the rest. It’s safer for you, for your customer and, ultimately, for your reputation as a brand.

Traceability has to be continuous, from the packaging itself to the delivery of the cargo. This will ensure a better service, and tracking systems are a good help for this purpose.

7. Make it a priority to use sustainable materials for industrial food packaging

The use of sustainable materials is beneficial, whenever possible, in industrial food packaging. First, because the chances of contact contamination are reduced. Secondly, because legislation tends to be more benevolent towards these materials. And, thirdly, because it serves to improve your corporate image. All this makes it advisable for you to use this option whenever possible.

Sustainable packaging can mean the use of biodegradable, compostable or recyclable materials. For example, cardboard or biodegradable plastic. The only thing you have to ensure is that it does not lower safety and quality standards. If it meets these conditions, it will pay to use sustainable products.

8. Check your packaging processes

Reviewing packaging processes is essential for you to locate potential blind spots or problems. This can be done by random or regular inspections, but always before the goods leave the warehouse. In any case, the important thing is that you can show that you processes meet quality standards.


Machinery and know-how are essential for industrial food packaging. At Movitec we have a range of state-of-the-art stretch wrapping machines for all types of industries, including the food and beverage industry. Contact us at for more details!