fbpx Glossary – ePac Flexible Packaging


Here's a list of industry terms that will help you get a better understanding of the production process and what packaging elements are the best fit for your brand.


3SS (3-side seal pouch)

  • Pouch sealed with a machine on 3 sides


AI (Aluminum/foil)

  • A thin foil, often laminated to the inside of packaging to provide maximum oxygen, aroma and water vapor barrier protection



  • Material designed to prevent the penetration of water, oils or certain gases that lead to spoilage, colour/consistency change, stale-tasting product; therefore increasing shelf life and effectiveness


  • Eco-friendly that is decomposed by bacteria and other living organisms

BOPP (Biaxially-oriented Polypropylene) 

  • A variant of polypropylene that’s stretched flat, used for applications that require moisture resistance, optical clarity and high tensile strength


Child-resistant (CR) zipper

  • Type of packaging closure that is designed to reduce the risk of children opening a package and ingesting potentially harmful or hazardous products

Cold seal

  • Type of sealing process that can be used on heat-sensitive products without causing any melting or damage


  • Products that break down into non-toxic components, with the assistance of heat, water, oxygen and microorganisms, nourishing the soil that it returns to
  • Compostable materials are biodegradable; however, not all biodegradable materials are compostable


  • Company that  “converts” raw materials into finished products

Copolymer Resin

  • Resins that are made from flexible, tough, and clear plastic material


DOY Seal (aka doyen, round bottom or doypack)

  • One of the most common style of pouch bottoms, with a U-shape gusset that uses the bottom seal as “feet” to stand up on
  • Ideal for lightweight products (typically less than 1 lb)


EVOH (Ethylene Vinyl Alcohol)

  • Used in multi-layer films as a barrier to reduce the amount of oxygen that permeates the plastic
  • Will typically serve as a based layer, surrounded by other plastics such PET


Flat bottom stand up pouch

  • Type of pouch that is sealed on the sides and uses one continuous piece of film so that the product sits at the bottom of the pouch
  • Ideal use for heavier products

Flexible packaging

  • Type of packaging whose shape can readily be changed



  • Fold in the side or bottom of the pouch, allowing it to expand when contents are inserted, allowing it to stand freely


Hang hole

  • Allows packages to be hung via hooks on retail shelving. 2 common types are round or sombrero hang holes

HDPE (High density polyethylene)

  • Versatile plastic made from strong, lightweight material that easily malleable and is widely recyclable in flexible and rigid forms


Impulse sealer (also known as heat sealer)

  • Can be used on a variety of plastics to strongly seal packaging




  • Type of pouch bottom, ideal for products weighing up to 5lbs


LDPE (Low density polyethylene)

  • Soft, flexible plastic with a low melting point
  • Product example: sandwich bag

LLDPE (Linear low density polyethylene)

  • Primarily used in film applications due to its toughness, flexibility, and relative transparency, with higher puncture resistance than LDPE
  • Product example: Saran or bubble wrap


Matte finish

  • Flat, non-shiny look used to play up image texture and is less susceptible to shine and fingerprints

Met BOPP (Metalised BOPP)

  • A BOPP film coated with a thin layer of metal (typically aluminum)

Metallic finish

  • Slightly glossy, metallic look used for artistic images to brighten colors and deepen saturation

MET PET (Metalised Polyethylene Terephthalate)

  • Same properties as PET, but with increased oxygen and water vapor barrier qualities

MVTR (Moisture Vapor Transfer Rate)

  • Standard indicator of how easily moisture can permeate a packaging film



OTR (Oxygen Transmission Ratio/Rate)

  • Measurement of the amount of oxygen gas that passes through a substance over a given period


PE (Polyethylene)

  • Most common and environmentally friendly type of plastic, used primarily for plastic bags and packaging

PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate)

  • Tough, temperature-resistant plastic, often combined with other films for heat sealability and improved barrier properties

Plow Bottom (aka plough, corner or folded bottom)

  • Type of pouch with no seal on the bottom, only sides of pouch, with product sitting flush on bottom
  • Ideal for heavier products (5+lbs)

PMS (Pantone Matching System) 

  • A proprietary color system used for color matching during the printing process


  • A molecule comprised of many smaller molecules called monomers

Post Consumer Recycled (PCR)

  • Content created by consumers after it has fulfilled its purpose/use that is diverted from landfills and repurposed into other commodities

PP (Polypropylene)

  • Has the lowest density all the plastics

Press to close (PTC or P2C) zipper

  • Type of zipper where consumers use their fingers to pull the brim apart and push the ribs together in order to open and close package

PVDC (Polyvinylidene Chloride PET)

  • Applied to plastics such as BOPP and PET as a water-based coating to increase barrier properties, giving the packaging a glossy finish and increase resistance to scuffing


Quality Check (QC)

  • A step used in many stages of the production process, used to ensure that what is being produced is up to the appropriate and expected standards


Resin Identification Code (RIC)

  • Number on plastic packaging , enclosed in a triangular, used to guide recycling



  • Machine used to convert a master roll into one or more narrower rolls


  • A substance capable of dissolving another, such as a liquid which dissolves a solid

ST PET (Soft touch PET)

  • A type of film finish that gives packaging a unique, more luxurious texture

Stock keeping unit (SKU)

  • Unique code which distinguishes one product from another


  • Any surface on which printing is done

SUP (stand up pouch)

  • Type of pouch with the ability to stand up, is sealed on both sides and around the bottom gusset.


Tear notch

  • Small, intentional tear in packaging, allowing for packaging to be easily opened



Variable data printing (VDP), also known as Variable Image Printing (VIP) or Variable Imaging (VI)

  • Type of digital printing that allows for unique text and graphics to be printed on each package, making it ideal for product launches, promotions, regional and event marketing
  • Brand protection, product authentication, track & trace and customer loyalty programs can all be enabled with a VDP solution

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)

  • Toxic chemicals emitted as gases from certain solids or liquids, some of which may have short and long-term adverse health effects



  • Roll of printing paper used in web or rotary printing


  • Packaging feature that allows you to see the contents inside of a package




  • Extent to which film can be stretched without tearing or puncturing



  • Feature that allows packaging to be reclosed or resealed to preserve freshness and minimize content spillage



Set yourself apart this holiday season with packaging as unique as your brand. Click below to learn how to attract more customers and increase seasonal revenue with Mosaic technology. 

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