Frequently asked questions

Whether it's to learn more about our servicing and maintenance packages, our product ranges or simply the accreditations we hold, you can find out all there is to know and more in our FAQs. If you have a specific question that isn't answered here, please get in touch.

Help & Advice

Frequently asked
questions

Yes! We offer a scheme where our equipment can be hired for a minimum period of three months. Should you wish to purchase the equipment after this period, we will deduct the hire charges you have already paid from the final price, meaning it costs no extra than purchasing it outright in the first place. Interested? Call us today to discuss this in further detail.

We have consistently achieved 'AA' grade BRC certification in the Global Standard for Storage and Distribution for many years, something which we know is of paramount importance to our customers. Our film manufacturing sites are also BRC certified. Certificates are available upon request.

Service contracts are the most straightforward and economical way of maintaining your wrapping machinery and keeping it running at its peak performance. For an upfront cost (that's discounted by 15% against our standard rates) you can secure a number of service visits arranged at regular intervals according to your usage, or use a visit in place of a costly breakdown. You will receive discounted spare parts throughout the lifetime of the contract and your needs will be prioritised over non-contract customers. Our team will work around your schedule, whether that's on weekends or evenings, and we'll call you before a visit is due to book in the work so you can relax. Finally, we'll always service your entire collection of YPS machinery on every visit, not just units that may need attention. There are no time limits or expiry dates on our service contracts. Enquire today to enjoy total peace of mind, flexibility, security and incredible value. Read more here.

A call-off order is a fantastic facility we use at YPS to ensure that we always have your packaging material ready for just when you need it! It offers our customers flexibility and freedom by reserving their shrink film, stretch film or polybags in our large 20,000 sq ft warehouse, with the convenience of paying for it as they take it 'on tap'. All that is needed is a purchase order for an agreed amount of film, from which amounts can be taken as and when required, until the purchase order has been completely fulfilled. This call-off facility may also help some customers delay price increases due to changes in the market, when arranged with their YPS account manager.

The UK Plastic Packaging Tax introduced in April 2022 imposes a £200 per tonne levy on manufactured or imported plastic packaging materials that contain less than 30% certified recycled content.

Yorkshire Packaging have been working closely with our manufacturing sites for a number of years to develop and bring to market a range of flexible films that contain over 30% and as much as 70% recycled content which are exempt from the tax. Look for the green logo stating 'Also available with recycled content' on our packaging material webpages to identify the conforming products.

We do not recommend the use of biodegradable films. The biodegrading process involves microorganisms breaking down the material, merely transforming it into plastic micro-particles. These tiny plastic fragments can make their way into oceans, are then eaten by plankton and in turn are eaten by fish, then entering our food chain. Furthermore, because biodegradable plastics are designed to break down after consumption, they cannot be recycled, breaking the full circle economy loop championed by WRAP. This means that resources perpetually have to be pumped into the manufacturing stage to ensure a continued supply of the biodegradable material, using fuel and energy whilst emitting CO2 and other harmful emissions.

A mono-material in shrink film terms refers to films created from a single polymeric family – polyethylene. As a simplified structure, mono-materials are preferable to the use of mixed material products and laminates (polymers are commonly integrated with foils for example) which are notoriously hard and expensive to recycle. The single polymer LDPE shrink films supplied by YPS can be classified as 100% recyclable to SPI code 04.

OPRL is an initiative, in conjunction with WRAP UK, to demonstrate recycling possibilities for packaging more widely and clearly. The On-Pack Recycling Label delivers a simple, UK-wide, consistent recycling message for use on both retailer private label and brand-owner packaging. Unlike other recycling labels, the scheme is based on current local authority recycling services and reflects what can be recycled, and where. This enables more consumers to recycle more material correctly, more often.

'PCW' is an abbreviation of the term ‘post-consumer waste’, whilst 'PIW' stands for ‘post-industrial waste’. Although flexible films containing either of one these are greener for our planet, there is a distinct difference between the two. PCW films are composed of material that has been through the stages of manufacture, consumption and recycling before being cleaned and re-granulated to be repurposed into new films. This means that PCW/recycled-content films are a ‘closed loop’ solution.

PIW films by contrast are composed of virgin polymers, albeit virgin materials which would otherwise be classified as a waste by-product of the plastic film manufacturing process or from a production line environment. These PIW resins, which could include trimmed plastic from a master reel in manufacture, for example, are still beneficial for the environment because they prevent unnecessary waste and repurpose material that is still fit for use. In essence, PIW films are a recycled raw material.  

The bullseye on a shrink-wrapped pack refers to the open areas or 'holes' at each side. These are created using a polythene film on a sleeve wrapper when total film coverage of the pack is not required. An example of a pack that uses a bullseye is a 12 pack of water bottles in a supermarket.

Shrink film is designed to constrict with the application of heat to produce a complete seal around an object. The finished effect is a plastic outer layer that is moulded around the shape of the product within. Stretch wrap (also known as ‘Pallet Wrap’) is used to secure items stacked together on a pallet prior to transportation, in order to provide stability and protection. Stretch film has an adhesive surface that clings to itself as it is wound around a load and the tension that is created maintains the bundled structure.

Within the general field of shrink wrapping we typically distinguish between two main areas. Display shrink wrapping is where the aesthetics of the final product is of primary importance and this typically involves the use of Polyolefin (PO) shrink film with the use of 'L' sealers and side sealers. Typical examples would be items such as shrink wrapped calendars, posters, boxed games, DVD’s etc. Transit shrink wrapping is where the primary focus is to protect and help transport the product through the distribution channel and this typically involves the use Polythene (PE) film and the use of sleeve sealers. A typical example would be a shrink wrapped pack of 24 litre bottles of water or flat-packed furniture being put through a carrier network.

Overwrapping is a method of display packaging which produces an envelope-fold at each end of the packs. The benefit of this method is that it is very fast, however the disadvantage is that the overwrapping machinery requires very expensive change parts. Shrink wrapping offers more flexibility as there are no change parts required for the machinery. When wrapping multiple pack sizes, not having change parts is a major advantage and makes the wrapping process much easier. The machine operators can run all of the different pack sizes through the machine without having to alter parts. This also saves costs on not only the parts themselves but also down-time from changeovers.

Many manufacturers and suppliers are beginning to make the change from cardboard boxes to shrink wrapping. A much more cost effective method than cartons, shrink wrapping usually saves between 50-75% on material alone. Shrink wrapping is also proven to be much more efficient as the equipment has the ability to collate products automatically and an added bonus is that there is no box to erect. Shrink wrapping saves space within the warehouse and distribution process as one pallet of shrink film is the equivalent to 15 pallets of cardboard. It is also considered to be more environmentally friendly as less packaging is used and what is used is 100% recyclable.

There are few important differences between the side feed and inline sleeve sealer models.

A side feed can provide flexibility due to its pusher plate feature, which pushes the pack through the curtain of film. This offers the potential to wrap trayless packs. Furthermore, side feed models are designed so that you do not need to worry about gapping the product, but you would have to change parts for different sized packs.

An inline sleeve sealer does not require any changeover of parts and is simpler in many ways as it consists of an infeed belt and outfeed belt with the curtain of film between the two. A slightly faster speed can be achieved on an inline system but trayless or very small packs cannot be wrapped because they would not maintain their collation as they transferred between the conveyors.

Both horizontal and vertical processes are styles of automated bagging suited to e-commerce or mail order fulfilment applications, but the introduction of product to the machines in each setting is different. Vertical bagging systems are usually hand-loaded, whereby an operator drops a product downwards into an opened bag before it is automatically sealed. Horizontal bagging involves the product travelling along an infeed conveyor and entering the bagging machine from a horizontal direction before being sealed within a bag material. Horizontal bagging is usually required when production is very high-speed or high volume.

'Fan-folded bags' are laid-flat concertinaed polybags supplied in boxes. The box of bags is positioned at the back of the autobagger and the chain of bags is threaded through into the machine via a clam-shell design. The term 'bags on reels' denotes a chain of bags wrapped around a central spool that is mounted on the machine and fed directly into the printer. We would recommend the use of fan-folded bags when the required bag size is especially large as reel capacities are limited and therefore the use of bags on reels would incur more downtime in production between changeovers.

A turntable model involves pallets being loaded onto a plate at the base. The plate is then spun round causing the stretch film, which is fixed to one corner, to wrap around the pallet. The film holder moves up and down to ensure the entire pallet is covered.

A rotating arm pallet wrapper, also called a rotary stretch wrapper, is ideal for more unstable or heavier products where the pallet is best kept stationary. The film holder is positioned on an arm which is levered from above and which moves around the pallet below in a circular motion, thereby wrapping the film around it. The arm is able to move up and down in order to distribute the stretch film over the entire pallet.

Both pallet wrapping systems are ideal for unstable or heavy loads because the pallets remain stationary whilst stretch film is applied, however there are some subtle differences between these two types.

The rotating arm machines use a cantilevered appendage with a mounted film holder to move around the perimeter of the pallet whilst dispensing and applying pallet wrap. 

The rotating ring machines, by contrast, feature a fixed circuit which sits above the stationery pallet and around which the stretch film dispenser tracks, wrapping the load as it encircles it. Rotary ring wrappers are better suited to very high speed applications. 

A blown film is created when a thick layer of extruded film emerges from a circular die and a large bubble of air is blown inside. The volume of the bubble and the original diameter and thickness of the extruded tube determine the ultimate thickness of the material. The vertical bubble, which may be many feet tall, allows the film to cool gradually as it is pulled up by rollers which then collapse the bubble and control the thin, flat tube of film as it is wound.

Cast films are produced through a linear die and ooze out onto large diameter chilling rollers. Depending on the original thickness of extrusion, sometimes the film is thinned to the target gauge by winding the resulting film faster than it is extruded. This is a horizontal process. Cast stretch films are the most common type of stretch films.

Cast films boast exceptional clarity and shine, which is useful in warehouses that use barcode scanners to identify pallets. They have excellent cling, high strength and high resist tear propagation. Their stretch capacity is up to 300% and their differential tack gives them great pallet holding properties. A low unwind noise makes cast films ideal for use in quieter working environments. By contrast, blown films have a maximum stretch of 250%, yet still offer high strength and puncture resistance. Available in clear, blue or black they have a high tack outer face and low tack inner face for elevated levels of cling. Either type of manufactured film lends itself to hand wrap and machine applications.