Maybe we’re biased, but we think there are a LOT of great reasons to package with PakTech handles. Whether it’s to help your company achieve its sustainability goals, sell more product in bulk, or take advantage of the cool colors that show off your stylish containers, there are many reasons why PakTech handles are the right choice for many brands. But at the end of the day, there’s one question everybody has to ask:
“OK, that all sounds great. How much is it going to cost?”
Great question! In this article we’re going to lay out the financial case for PakTech handles. When aspects like sustainability or durability come up, we’ll link them back to financials as quickly as possible. We’ll also include comparisons where viable.
We use a set price list for our can carrier multipack solutions, and can affordably work with your team to design and produce prototypes for custom projects. If you would like to know specific prices as they apply to your business, please contact us.
Our goal with this article is to make the case that PakTech handles are an excellent financial value. That doesn’t mean we’re the cheapest option at every step. We create a quality product, and that is reflected in the price. However, we will explain how PakTech handles are a cost competitive option overall, which, when combined with those other aspects (sustainability, durability, selling in bulk, etc), make our handles an incredible value for your organization.
First: Existing Handle vs Custom Design
When most consumers think of PakTech, they think of the can carriers and multi-packs often found on beer, wine, cider, and other beverages. These are pre-designed handles which we offer from a set price list to fit widely used can formats.
But there’s infinite design possibilities with our custom solutions. These are projects where, if we don’t already have a handle in our existing library that meets your specifications, we can work with your team to design, prototype, and manufacture.
We will discuss the financial case for both options throughout this article. The nice thing is, both parts of our business are cost competitive as a solution in most or nearly all applicable situations!
Direct Handle Cost vs Competitors
When it comes to the direct cost of our handles on a per-unit basis, PakTech’s pre-designed multipacks are a mid-cost option as compared to competitors. On the high-cost end, we compete against paperboard, which offers more “billboard space” for the product in exchange for costing up to three times as much per unit plus more detrimental environmental impact than PakTech handles. On the low-cost end, we compete against plastic rings, which can cost half as much per unit, in exchange for being harder to recycle and infamously dangerous to sea life.
When it comes to the custom market, the short answer to where our handles fall on a per-unit cost basis is “it depends.” The long answer is that often, our handles are cost competitive or cost leaders due our low barriers to entry, the affordable cost of our design and prototyping (both discussed below), and other options not being suitable for the project at all.
So when it comes to a straight per-unit financial analysis, PakTech handles may or may not be the most inexpensive option. And we have no problem admitting that, because when you drill down into some of the other numbers, you’ll find a place where PakTech shines.
Application Savings for Startups & Small Batches
A cost that consumers never think about but which business operators think about a lot is the cost of putting the product into the packaging. Application costs are a major consideration, and it’s here where PakTech excels.
When it comes to small companies that are just getting started, or which primarily package in small batches, PakTech has a huge advantage over other secondary packaging options: PakTech handles can be applied by hand. This is not true of pricier paperboard, which cannot be applied by hand at any scale, nor of the cheap plastic rings. For a business just getting started or a product line that’s being tested, PakTech handles present an opportunity to get your product into multipacks without unnecessary upfront cost. Just buy the handles and apply them by hand, and you’re good to go.
This is especially useful on the custom side, where prototypes can easily be snapped onto your product to see how the final product will look and perform. It takes some of the guesswork out of a new product launch, something any business is grateful for.
PakTech Applicators Often Are Cost Leaders
For companies that package their products in high quantities, we have good news: When it comes to our Applicators, PakTech is cost competitive.
For companies that opt to package with paperboard, they’ll need a Cartoner (also known as a Cartoning Machine) to apply the boxes. Cartoning is very difficult to accomplish by hand, and cartoners can be extremely expensive. The same is true for plastic rings and their applicators. This is often why companies which use these packaging options are hesitant to switch—they’ve already sunk a lot of capital into the equipment.
This is an incredibly important point to us, because the affordability of PakTech applicators, plus the ability to apply our handles by hand in small batches, significantly lowers the barrier to entry for companies that want to enter and grow in the food, beverage, or household products space.
We think this is huge. We would rather give our partners a great deal on our applicators and work our hardest to keep your business through quality products and service, rather than depend on the sunk cost of expensive equipment to keep customers locked in. We think that’s a better way of doing business, and we hope you agree.
A Note On Fair Pricing
We mentioned it earlier, but PakTech does something unusual with our pre-designed can carrier multipack solutions: We have a set price list. Most companies negotiate prices on a per-customer basis, which means that the companies with the best negotiators (or the most market weight) will get the best prices.
We don’t do that. We have a set price list, and the only way to get a better price is to order more units per shipment. We offer bulk discounts because of manufacturing efficiencies. By producing in larger quantities, we save on manufacturing costs, so we pass these savings on to you.
That’s the only way to get a discount on our multipack handles. We believe this fair pricing model makes it so all our partners know they’re getting the best deal possible, and it enables us to focus less time on negotiating or keeping different prices straight, and more time on creating great products and delivering fantastic customer service.
Let’s Talk About Shipping Costs
No discussion about packaging costs is complete without talking about shipping. It’s incredibly important to minimize shipping costs whenever possible.
That’s why, when our engineering team was creating PakTech’s 2nd generation “easy-release” handles, they made sure to include shipping improvements as well. They reduced the gram weight of resin per handle and boosted nesting (how closely the handles stack), so that more handles could be shipped in the same space for a better price.
All in all, this allowed us to increase the number of handles per pallet by 57%, while keeping our shipping costs competitive with other secondary packaging options. Those are savings that you reap again and again. PakTech continually strives to engineer handles that perform better, use less materials, and have lower shipping costs.
The Durable Packaging That Doesn’t Quit
Speaking of shipping, there’s nothing quite so frustrating as a shipment suffering damage during shipping. Damaged product is unsightly, unsuitable for sale without fresh packaging, and in some cases, unsuitable for sale at all. We’ve heard this story before. For example, our first customer was a dairy whose paperboard cartons kept getting ruined in the dairy’s damp environment.
Fortunately, PakTech’s handles are extremely durable that’s why we chose 100% recycled plastic as our choice material. We’ve had partners test our handles in 100° heat and 90% humidity for 24 hours (their standard procedure for all new packaging), and our handles passed with flying colors. Our handles are rugged, and impermeable to heat and moisture. This results in less wastage during storage, shipping, and display, and more product that your customers are able to buy. The financial benefits of that are clear, especially as compared to less-durable alternatives.
Wash, Disinfect, Reuse, Reapply
It’s useful to know: since PakTech’s handles are impermeable to moisture, they’re extremely easy to wash, disinfect, and reuse.
If something spills on the handles during packaging, no problem—just wash them and they’re ready to use. Even in non-pandemic times, we’ve had partners offer their consumers a discount for bringing in their used PakTech handles, which they then cleaned and reused.
We love this! We’re proud of using 100% recycled and recyclable plastic because we care about the environment and want to do our part to help. That’s why we’re enthusiastic proponents of people reusing our handles, and are happy to have created a product that’s durable enough to withstand multiple uses.
Prototypes & Custom Projects - Affordable & Fast
While we have a number of pre-designed solutions that fit many applications, we also create a lot of custom handles. When we get a new inquiry, approximately 1/3rd of the time we’ve already created a handle that fits our new customer’s specifications. If so, that’s great! If not, we get to work creating one.
This is another area where PakTech’s process really shines, and saves you money upfront. We’re a nimble company, and we’re able to go from inquiry to production in 10 weeks or less. That’s 10 weeks to receive an inquiry, work with your team to develop a concept, create a prototype, and start production. We are proud of our Rapid Manufacturing Process.
As anyone who’s worked in manufacturing will tell you, that’s fast. We pride ourselves on our design and prototyping process for the same reason we’ve worked so hard to make our applicators affordable: To keep barriers to entry low. Time is money, after all, which is why we do everything we can to keep our design process not just cost competitive, but time competitive.
That’s why, if you’re looking for a custom solution and need it faster than 10 weeks, don’t hesitate to request a quote. While we don’t want to overpromise, if you’re looking to bring a product to market and don’t have a lot of time, we’ll do everything we can to get a prototype to you ASAP. Our design consultation is free and our prototype manufacturing is extremely affordable. Reach out to learn more.
...And They’re Sustainable Too!
We hope this article has made the financial case for PakTech handles. When you step back and look at the financial details—a mid-cost per-unit option with bulk discounts, fair pricing, industry-leading application options, shipping improvements, unrivaled durability, and custom options for many projects—we believe PakTech handles are the right choice for many, if not most, organizations in the food, beverage, and household products industries.
When you then add in the sustainability benefits, that’s when the case goes from great to unmatched. With over a half-billion milk jugs recycled and repurposed into PakTech handles 80 million pounds of plastic have been saved from our landfills and oceans to date. We’re proud to be part of the solution creating a circular economy for plastic.
Read more about what PakTech is doing to be a good steward of the environment, including the recent launch of the U.S. Plastics Pact, of which PakTech is a founding member. Have we successfully made the case for PakTech handles? Reach out today to discuss custom options, or ask for a price sheet.