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What Is PLA Shrink Film?

Mar. 03, 2023

PLA shrink film is a type of biodegradable and compostable plastic film made from polylactic acid (PLA), a biopolymer derived from renewable resources such as cornstarch or sugarcane. This film is commonly used in the packaging industry for wrapping, bundling, and protecting various types of products.


Shrink film is a type of plastic film that shrinks when exposed to heat, creating a tight and conforming seal around the product. This can help protect the product from external elements such as moisture, dust, and insects, as well as improve the overall appearance of the package. Shrink film is commonly used in food packaging, electronics, cosmetics, and other industries.


PLA shrink film is a sustainable alternative to traditional shrink films made from petroleum-based plastics. These conventional shrink films are not biodegradable and can take hundreds of years to break down in the environment, contributing to pollution and environmental degradation. In contrast, PLA shrink film can be composted and biodegraded within a few months, reducing the environmental impact and improving sustainability.

PLA Shrink Film

PLA Shrink Film

One of the main benefits of PLA shrink film is its biodegradability and compostability. This means that the film can break down naturally into non-toxic components when disposed of properly, without releasing harmful chemicals or microplastics into the environment. PLA shrink film is also certified by various organizations such as the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) and the European Bioplastics Association (EUBP), ensuring that it meets certain standards for biodegradability and compostability.


Another benefit of PLA shrink film is its versatility and compatibility with a wide range of packaging applications. PLA shrink film can be used to wrap and protect a variety of products, including food, beverages, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and electronics. The film can be printed on using standard printing technologies, allowing for customization and branding opportunities. PLA shrink film can also be used in combination with other materials such as paper and cardboard to create hybrid packaging solutions that offer both sustainability and functionality.


PLA shrink film also has good mechanical properties, such as high tensile strength, puncture resistance, and durability. This means that the film can withstand the stresses and strains of the packaging and transportation process, ensuring that the product inside is well-protected. The film also has good optical properties, such as high transparency and gloss, which can enhance the product's appearance and visibility on the shelf.

PLA Shrink Film

 PLA Shrink Film

However, there are also some challenges and limitations to consider when using PLA shrink film. One of the main challenges is its high cost compared to traditional shrink films. PLA shrink film is currently more expensive to produce due to the higher cost of raw materials and manufacturing processes. This can make it less attractive to some businesses, especially those with tight profit margins.


Another challenge is the limited heat stability of PLA shrink film compared to traditional shrink films. PLA shrink film requires a lower temperature and shorter exposure time to heat in order to shrink properly. This can make it more challenging to work with for some packaging applications that require higher temperatures or longer exposure times.


In addition, there is still some debate and uncertainty around the environmental impact and sustainability of PLA shrink film. While the film is biodegradable and compostable, there are concerns about the amount of energy and resources required to produce it, as well as the potential for contamination of composting facilities if the film is not properly disposed of.


Overall, PLA shrink film is a promising alternative to traditional shrink films that offers improved sustainability and functionality for a wide range of packaging applications. However, its higher cost and limited heat stability may limit its adoption in some industries and applications, and more research is needed to fully understand its environmental impact and sustainability.

HYF is a professional PLA shrink film manufacturer, specializing in providing clear/transparent PLA film and matt PLA film for flexible packages and shrink labels. You can find various thicknesses, various widths, and various sizes 100% biodegradable shrink film here. Getting in touch with us.

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