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Five Important Features of Carton Liners for Food

November 7, 2016

by Danielle Hunter, Sales Associate at Chantler Packaging Inc.


My favourite cookie recipe combines the crunch of graham crackers and the sweetness of chocolate chips to create essentially what I consider a s’more cookie, minus the white fluffy marshmallow. Hypothetically, let’s say I wanted every Starbucks to stock individual portions of my cookie as a perfect compliment to a venti warm hot chocolate. 

What does it take to move my cookie recipe from my kitchen and my flour stained Roots sweatpants to the commercial market? How would my cookies be stored until they reached a packaging facility? 

The one vessel that would most assist my beloved s’more cookies in this journey is a carton liner. 

Carton liner [definition]: A gusted or non-gusseted approximately garbage bag sized bag typically coloured clear or blue utilized in the protection of cardboard containers for use in the food industry.

 Why carton liners?

1) Cleanliness

With large quantities of food, comes large responsibility. Carton liners keep your food product clean from dirt and debris when packed inside a corrugated carton. 

Certifications like HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) ensure that facilities provide the tools for safe food handling with options such as boxed carton liners. Additionally, as many consumers are unaware of like myself that the government of Canada passed the Safe Food for Canadians Act in 2012 which outlines guidelines to “protect consumers by targeting unsafe practices” and “institute a more consistent inspection regime across all food commodities”.

Traditional carton liners on rolls (think large rolls of plastic paper towel ) can be thought of much like the old wives tale of the five second rule. When a liner accidentally touches the floor, particularly the core, it can become compromised. We require our employees to wear hairnets, and gloves to promote food safety, but are we doing enough due diligence in other areas? What better way to protect what carton liners are used for than a carton liner itself?

2) Saving storage space

I think at one point we’ve all wished for that IKEA inspired closet space with various Swedish name inspired organizers. Every item has its own place and you no longer have to wonder, where did my favourite suit go? Did my significant other throw out my favourite sweater from college?

Like the average household closet, the average plant storage room or area could use some love too. Cringing should not be required to enter and any supplies being received should not be treated as a game of Jenga. Traditional carton liners (typically on rolls) take 265 cartons to ship a year’s worth of liners, whereas other engineered liners (ex: Sealtite®) only take 73 cartons. That’s almost 200 less cartons. 200 cartons could be room for a lift truck, a workstation or even room for new product packaging. 

3) Less plastic waste

Just recently I had the opportunity to view one of my favourite Pixar movies, WALL-E. If you’re not familiar, I’ll give you a ten second run down. Consumerism takes over planet Earth leaving it filled up with garbage and inhabitable for human life any longer.


What’s the old saying about “Less is More”? Traditional carton liners are notorious for being thick (think like Ziploc freezer bag thick) and can be estimated at weighing up to 70lbs for every 1,000 carton liners. Sealtite® tips the scale at a mere 26lbs for every 1,000 liners. Less thick liners means less waste at the end of the day, I think WALL-E would be proud.

4) Traceability

I think we’ve all had that moment, that moment when we get home from the grocery store and realize that despite ketchup being on sale and its BBQ season, that we already had some in the pantry. Now we’re really not sure how we’re going to fit all this ketchup on the shelf, oh wait, I have four jars of peanut butter too? I’m sure you get my point though, maintaining inventory is not the easiest task in the world, no wonder why during those big sales the grocery stores run out of chocolate milk cartons.

Let’s imagine for a second traditional carton liners are like paper towel. No matter how many times we tell the kids, they will use more than one piece. The question is how many pieces are really left? There’s no way to count despite certain companies claiming that they can pick up twice as much spilt juice. And what about those last pieces stuck on the roll? Sealtite® carton liners come in inventoried boxes and quantities can be customized to the needs of your plant.

5) Ease of use

I think we can all relate to struggling to open up a garbage bag (try that a hundred times an hour) or even imagine working at the Pot of Gold factory. Each delectable piece is nestled inside its own little wrapper, snug until it can be selected to eat. Now let’s back up a few steps, imagine fiddling with each little wrapper individually, a large stack of hundreds of wrappers all stuck together. Carton liners in a box, are just as easy as removing a piece of Kleenex from a box.

Carton liners are essential to packaging food items. Hopefully these tips help you in your journey to the commercial market.

This article was written by Danielle Hunter, Sales Associate at Chantler Packaging Inc. You can get in touch with Danielle by emailing her at [email protected].