food packaging machineGrowing your brand and ensuring your products get to your customers requires a reliable and timely production process. Contracting a co-packer can streamline the process for you.

Contract packaging companies offer packaging services for various products in retail, commercial, and trade industries, including food like snacks and dry pasta.

It’s challenging to find a trustworthy and reliable co-packer that you can depend on for the long term. Here are a few tips to help you find a great co-packing company.

Co-packers: internal vs. external

If you’re unsure whether you want to keep your product packaging in-house or hire a co-packer, consider the complexities of packaging and labeling products. 

Contracting with a co-packing company can solve the following problems: 

  1. Selling products faster than you can package them
  2. Signs of anxiety and stress in your production staff
  3. Business growth and marketing falling short because of packaging demands
  4. Inability to produce new products because of time spent on packaging 

By developing a relationship with a great co-packing company, it gives you more time to build your business by creating additional products and implementing new marketing strategies.

Also, a co-packing company has all the equipment needed for your packaging needs. This is a cost-effective solution because it doesn’t require you to hire additional employees or invest in equipment.

Tips for finding the right co-packer  

Before selecting a co-packer, assess the benefits of outsourcing your packaging with a company that has the equipment and qualified staff needed for all aspects of the packaging process. 

Check several co-packing companies to see if they offer a fixed cost and hold the required certifications and FDA approval, similar to Econo-Pak’s SQF level 3 certification. Some other key considerations include: 

1. Location

Hiring a co-packing company that’s located in another state or country can involve additional costs, increased delivery times, and communication difficulties when problems occur.

A co-packer close to your location can simplify the process significantly. However, if you do select one that is in a different location, ensure that they have the ability to ship nationally, like Econo-Pak.

2. Safety and cleanliness

Keeping the co-packing facility clean and free from packing debris makes the packaging process safe and reduces errors. Choose a co-packing company that implements stringent safety and hygiene protocols.

Quality assurance certifications are indications of co-packing company standards. Econo-Pak takes quality and safety seriously, with certifications at the state and global levels:

  • Safe Quality Food Certified (SQF Level 3)
  • Organic Certified by Baystate Organic Certifiers
  • Costco Safety and Quality Audit Certified
  • Food and Drug Administration Certified (FDA Compliant)
  • Kosher OU-D Certified
  • Gluten-Free Certified by the Gluten Intolerance Group of North America

3. Certifications

Ensure that the co-packer you choose has taken the necessary steps to properly certify their facility, processes, and procedures. Proper certifications will help protect the integrity of your product and ensure high-quality packaging that supports your brand reputation. Some of the most important certifications include:

  • FDA certification
  • Kosher Check
  • USDA Organic certification
  • Fair Trade

4. Equipment

If possible, examine the equipment to make sure the company uses modern packaging technology for enhanced control of the entire co-packing process. 

5. Experience

Experienced co-packing companies offer fast product turnaround times. By using the right equipment, they ensure high-quality packaging with shorter lead times.

Once you’ve finished researching, narrow down your list. You might not need all the services offered by larger companies. Ask if the company is flexible and offers only the services you need.

Since your customers trust your brand, it’s important that the co-packer meets your sourcing requirements. Talk to them about their suppliers, and ask if adjustments can be made to meet your needs. 

Econo-Pak can help you outsource your packaging

Now that you understand how to find a co-packer, start your research. It might seem like a huge undertaking, but once you find a reliable company, you’ll wonder how you ever ran your business without one.

Partnering with Econo-Pak provides you with quick turnaround times, affordable pricing, and a commitment to quality packaging. Econo-Pak offers flexible services to both large and small businesses for high-volume co-packing and co-manufacturing. See why our clients love us on our Testimonials page.

Ready to get started? Request a fixed-price quote today for your dry food project.

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