Quick Links

Multiwall Paper Bags
Connect With Us Today
Current Market Info In 2017

Listed below are the market indicators that tend to impact the pricing within the packaging world. Here you will find the most current market price and the percentage difference from the previous quarter.  We continuously evaluate these items in order to provide our customers the most competitive prices.
  • Polypropylene up 4.8% to $1,091/Metric Ton since Jan 2017.
  • LDPE down 5.2%to $1,271/Metric Ton since Jan 2017.

  • Oil down 1.22% to $53.06/Barrel since
    Jan 2017.

  • Natural Gas down 3.14% to $3.17/Million BTU since Jan 2017.

  • Diesel Fuel slight decrease of 0.15% to $2.582/Gallon since Jan 2017.

  • Steel Products & Packaging - decreased 23.85% since Jan 2017.
Exchange Rates:
  • Rupee at 64.69 - gained 4.37% against the dollar since Jan 2017.
  • Yuan - increased 1.22% since Jan 2017, at 6.47
Understanding UN Markings 

Global-Pak Inc. is a supplier of all UN rated packaging materials such as: steel pails, plastic pails,corrugated packaging materials and FIBCs, all of which we can custom fit to your specific need and UN rating.

We undergo continuous UN training provided by  Apex Packaging Services , to make certain we provide accurate information and remain knowledgeable to handle your UN packaging needs.

We have compiled some UN packaging information and made it available to you to help you better understand the UN Symbol or Markings. Please find this information in the link below.

Global-Pak Customer
Comments & Review Summary 
Check out what our customers are saying about us! 

Global Pak Inc. is the major supplier of all our packaging needs. They were selected for the following reasons.

  1. Quality of products
  2. Competitive pricing
  3. Products passed  testing 
  4. Stocking full range of standard and customized products
  5. Weekly inventory conducted
  6. Daily delivery if needed

Global-Pak has consistently provided us with the best service and at the best prices. They go the extra mile to supply us with what we need and when we need it. I know I can count on them to come through for us in a pinch.
- Chuck F.

*Full reference letter(s) available upon request.

The Price of a Bulk Bag or FIBC(Flexible Intermediate Bulk Container)

Dear Friends and Customers,

How much does a bulk bag or FIBC cost?  What is the price of a bulk bag or FIBC? I sent out an RFQ for bulk bags ; How can companies give me pricing on the same specification and be so far apart?  How can I make sure that I am getting a fair price on my bulk bag or FIBC? 

In this article, I am going to try to address the above questions that we at Global-Pak receive on a daily basis and offer some insight into the cost or price of a bulk bag or FIBC.  We will not be using the term Supersack ® in this article as it is a trademark of Bag Corp .   The goal will be to help the reader understand what to look for and what to be aware of when pricing bulk bags or FIBCs and to make sure the price you are getting is the best cost for your specific needs and applications. (For the balance of the article, the term " bulk bags " will be used, and FIBC will be the equivalent term.)

Let's start with the basic components of a bulk bag , so you have an understanding of what drives cost.  The cost structure of a bulk bag is comprised of five parts 1)Polypropylene 2)Labor/Overhead 3)Freight 4)Duties and 5)Profit Margin.  For discussion purposes, we are going to focus on the two major cost components of imported bulk bags 1) Polypropylene and 2) Labor/Overhead with a minor reference to import duties.  We are only focusing on imported bags as they make up the majority of bags used in the United States market.

Polypropylene is the material almost all bulk bags are manufactured with, and this material typically represents 35% to 60% of the cost of a bulk bag dependent upon how complicated the construction of the bulk bag . Labor and Overhead will make up the next biggest portion of bulk bag cost structure with a percent range again dependent on the construction style, with a range of 40% to 65% of the cost on very complex bulk bags .

Now that you have the essential components of the bulk bag cost, you can begin to answer the question "how can I make sure my pricing in the marketplace stays fair?"  We would suggest that you ask for indexed pricing based on Platts or ICIS reporting, both of which monitor world plastic and chemical pricing. In this case, our concern is with the polypropylene markets.  In particular, at Global-Pak , we track weekly movements of Rafia grade polypropylene in the South East Asian markets. 

If the price indexes are monitored, and your bag pricing is indexed off a predetermined labor percentage that you and your supplier have agreed, you can make sure that you maintain a fair market cost on your bulk bags .  To take this a step further so you do not have constant fluctuations of your pricing, you can establish a flat dollar thresh hold or percentage move of resin before a price movement is realized.   Please keep in mind inventory programs will result in a lag in movement of price indexing on both an upward and downward price fluctuation.  Upon request, we can supply more details and examples of formulas used in past agreements. 

Labor and Overhead is the next biggest cost driver on bulk bags . Unfortunately, this driver is not readily indexed and can be affected by labor cost in the country of origin, plant efficiencies, and working conditions at the manufacturing facility.  With the labor cost representing the previously mentioned 40% to 60% of the bulk bag the biggest suggestion we can give here is to understand the market you are buying from and make sure that you are comfortable with the percentage of labor assigned to your particular bag design. If you or your company values social ideals, you may want to ensure the labor percent is at a level you are comfortable with, and it matches your company values.  For example, a manufacturer who meets SA8000 standards will most likely have higher labor cost and overhead than a company who does not.

Just to make sure that everyone is aware there is also an 8.4% import duty on bulk bags and this duty is paid upon customs clearance.  If the bulk bags are being exported out of the country, a duty drawback can be applied for and refunded to the exporter of record.  Your bulk bag supplier should be able to point you in the right direction or help you find a company that can assist you with this process should you qualify.   This cost is a lesser cost, but it may be a topic worth keeping your eye on as the political powers have discussed changes that could affect bulk bag imports.

The next question that often comes up: "My company sent out an RFQ for bulk bags . How can companies give me pricing on the same specification and be so far apart?

The most common answer to this question is another question, is everyone quoting the same specification?  There are multiple ways to construct a bag to get to the safe working load (or SWL), and they do not all necessarily mean that the bags are the best for your application.  If a bidder uses a lighter fabric and lighter lift loops, it may perform perfectly fine for material that weighs 1000 lbs and is light and fluffy.  However,  if you are packaging 4000 pounds of magnesium alloys and your packaged product is going into a steel mill, the fabric weights and lift loops are critical to the safety of the bag. 

So, total bulk bag weight is the first place to look when pricing is all over the board. A couple good questions to ask your bidders are, "approximately how much weight, in polypropylene, is being used to construct this bag?" or "how much does the empty bag itself actually weigh?"  A scale is the easiest way to keep this portion of your specifications in check.  A digital fish hook scale is a perfect tool to weigh the bags that work for you and make sure that weight is recorded as part of your specifications.  It is also a quick and easy manner to spot check bags coming into your facility on an ongoing basis as part of your quality check program.  If you are part of a Global-Pak inventory program, we do this, and more, as part of our quality check system. However, for direct shipments, or if your supplier is not doing this, it is an excellent way to ensure you're getting what you're paying for.

The next steps in the process of answering the differences in bulk bag pricing are a little harder to evaluate, but a trusted supplier is critical to the next few discussion points.  Calcium carbonate is an inexpensive and necessary filler in the extrusion of polypropylene tapes.  The acceptable level of calcium carbonate is typically between 4% to 6% range for the manufacturing of bulk bags  the drawback of too much calcium carbonate is that it counteracts UV protective additives and it reduces the tensile strength of the polypropylene tape.  The reason you need to be aware of the content is that it is a cheap filler, and some manufacturers will push the limits of the additive to cut cost as it is not visible to the naked eye.  Typically excess calcium carbonate will not show up as a problem until the bag is stressed during use or exposure to sunlight that can cause the bulk bag to fail prematurely.  Chemical analysis of the bulk bag components can identify the percentage of calcium carbonate used, or a top lift test can be useful as a bag with too much filler often will not pass a 5 to 1 SWL top lift test.

Ultra Violet Inhibitors or UVI levels are another area of concern and a hidden cost driver in the manufacturing of polypropylene components for bulk bags .  UVI is an expensive additive to polypropylene to keep it from breaking down when exposed to direct or indirect sunlight, but it is essential in most cases.  Most manufacturers will add 2 to 3% UVI  to the polypropylene to meet the ASTM G53.96 and ISO Standard 21898.  In applications where the bag will never see the outdoors or where the bags are filled with a product such as fresh produce and the produce would spoil before the bag could break down under sunlight, it may not be as critical.  A bulk bag that does not have the UVI correctly added to the polypropylene will begin to break down as quickly a few weeks under the right (or wrong) conditions, depending on how you look at it.

So if there is any chance at all your bag can become exposed to direct or indirect sunlight for any amount of time, do not skimp on the UVI.  There is a reason there is an ASTM standard, and the safety consequences and lost material could be enormous.  Make sure your supplier has some form of testing procedures set up to manage and mitigate your risks as a bulk bag user from UVI test to Top Lift Test and that there is a process that allows you access to those test results upon request.

The above topics are a few of the key points to keep in mind that can affect the cost and should be considered in evaluating the cost or price of a bulk bag .  Remember that the cheapest bulk bag is not always the best bulk bag .  In our opinion, the best bulk bag is a cost effective problem free bulk bag .

The key takeaways:
  • Make sure your bulk bags are what your paper specifications are supposed to be and vice versa.
  • Weighing your bulk bags is an easy quality check.
  • Ask about the levels of calcium carbonate levels added to your bulk bags.  If it is above 6%, you may be at risk.
  • UVI is critical. Don't let your supplier skimp on UVI. Claims of broken bags, lost material or injuries are more than you could ever save.
  • Monitor your market pricing of polypropylene on either Platts or ICIS to ensure you stay at fair market pricing once you negotiate your pricing.
If you would like further information or like help auditing your current specifications or creating specifications for the first time, please reach out to your Global-Pak sales professional or click here  to request more information or to request an audit.
Jim Foster
Bank Account

Imagine there is a bank, which credits your account each morning with $86,400.00 and carries over no balance from day to day, it allows you to keep no cash balance, and every evening cancels whatever part of the amount you had failed to use during the day. What would you do? Draw out every cent, of course!
Well, everyone has such a bank. Its name is Time.
Every morning, it credits you with 86,400 seconds. Every night it writes off, as lost, whatever of this you have failed to invest to good purpose. It carries over no balance. It allows no overdraft. Each day it opens a new account for you. Each night it burns the records of the day. If you fail to use the day's deposits, the loss is yours.
There is no going back. There is no drawing against the "tomorrow."
Therefore, there is never not enough time or too much time. Time management is decided by us alone and nobody else. It is never the case of us not having enough time to do things, but the case of whether we want to do it.

- Author Unknown

Again, thank you so much for your support and allowing us to share our news with you.  We look forward to growing your business and ours.

Kevin Channell
Global-Pak, Inc.

  Quote: Conquer yourself and the world lies at your feet. -St. Augustine