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    Flexible Pouches

    Flexible pouches are multilayer film packaging structures composed of many different types of material sealed together by laminating adhesives or heat seal coatings. Flexible pouches are the most common application for flexible packaging and have rapidly grown in popularity in the packaging world. 

Flexible pouches offer better waste reduction than other types of packaging by requiring less material. They also provide greater functionality within the food and beverage packaging industry to allow many different types of food to be packaged while occupying less space. The material and adhesive requirements of each pouch vary based on the packaging contents. 

Hot-Fill and Retort Pouch Applications

Traditionally, foods and beverages that require sterilization before packaging have been packaged in glass jars or metal cans, which are heavy and bulky. Using flexible pouches, many food and beverage items can be sterilized quicker due to the thin laminate structure of the pouch, as in the example of retort sterilization. These retort pouches may be steam sterilized before or after filling and sealing to prolong product shelf life. Shelf life may also be extended using hot-fill pouches. In this instance, food and beverages that are still boiling hot from sterilization are poured into the hot-fill pouch and then sealed.

For either retort or hot fill, the flexible pouch and the adhesives and coatings used to seal the layers that construct the pouch must be able to withstand incredibly harsh production environments. Therefore, it's important to use adhesives and heat seal coatings designed to perform well under high-heat conditions. 

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Laminating Adhesives and Heat Seal Coatings for Hot-Fill and Retort Pouches

Dow's laminating adhesives and heat seal coatings are available in various grades that offer the heat and moisture resistance needed for hot-fill and retort pouch laminations. The adhesives and coatings listed below conform to FDA 21 CFR 177.1395 and 177.1390 and provide durable bonds necessary for keeping pouch layers sealed during retort sterilization and hot filling. 

ADCOTE™ laminating adhesives offer high green bond strength. Green bond strength refers to the peel strength of the bond immediately after lamination or heat sealing. Therefore, the high green bond strength offered by ADCOTE™ in retort and hot-fill pouch laminations improves efficiency by allowing for faster next-step processing.  

While it does not provide as high of green bond strength as the ADCOTE™ adhesives listed, MOR-FREE™ 1390A is also offered here as a solventless laminating adhesive option for hot-fill and retort applications.  

    Grade
    Product Type
    Solvent
    Viscosity (cPs)
    Coating Weight (lbs/ream)
    ADCOTE™ 1217D
    Heat Seal Coating
    1,3-Dioxolane
    25
    2.0–6.0
    ADCOTE™ 102A
    Solvent Based Adhesive
    Methyl ethyl ketone (MEK)
    600
    1.2–2.0
    ADCOTE™ 506-40
    Solvent Based Adhesive
    Methyl ethyl ketone (MEK)
    450
    1.5–3.0
    ADCOTE™ 812
    Solvent Based Adhesive
    Ethyl Acetate
    2,500
    2.0–3.0
    MOR-FREE™ 1390A
    Solventless Laminating Adhesive
    N/A
    1,000
    1.0–1.4

Summary

By using Dow's laminating adhesives and heat seal coatings in retort and hot-fill pouches, converters and packaging manufacturers can be assured that their laminations will be good quality and that their pouches will withstand the harsh environments associated with retort and high-temperature fills. Contact us below to talk with one of our adhesive specialists about your retort or hot-fill application. We are happy to discuss how Dow's laminating adhesives and heat seal coatings can help boost the efficiency and performance of your packaging. 

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