Setting Up a Flexible Packaging Testing Laboratory
Here at Flex-Pack Engineering we have helped many customers set up their own flexible packaging testing laboratory to perform a wide variety of analytical and physical testing. These in-house laboratories have the ability to perform Tensile Testing, Elmendorf Tear Testing, Dart Drop Testing, Coefficient of Friction (COF) Testing, Haze Testing, Gloss Testing, Heat Seal Testing, DSC (Differential Scanning Calorimetry) Testing, OIT (Oxidative Induction Time) Testing, OTR (Oxygen Transmission Rate) Testing, and MVTR (Moisture Vapor Transmission Rate) Testing just to name a few.
Knowing when it makes sense to set up an in-house laboratory can be tricky and involves considering a lot of factors. First and foremost, if you invest in the necessary equipment and pay a consultant to set up the lab, you still need someone on your team who can perform the analytical and physical testing and interpret the results accurately as well as make appropriate recommendations based on the results.
Generally speaking, knowing when it is time to set up an in-house laboratory comes down to when you have a daily need for flexible packaging testing, and you are willing to make the investment in lab equipment, space and furniture for the laboratory, and most importantly hiring new staff who can do the testing, or transferring existing staff from their current duties to perform the testing and fully utilize the equipment.
At Flex-Pack Engineering we have over 30 years of experience in the flexible packaging testing field. We can help you set up an in-house laboratory with an overall design based on your testing requirements, make equipment recommendations based on our vast experiences with testing equipment and perform initial calibrations of the testing equipment to ensure accurate results. Most importantly, we can educate your team on how to perform the tests, interpreting the results, and make recommendations on how to improve your performance.
Our process begins by asking what your goals and objectives are, and why you want to add a laboratory rather than outsource the testing to a qualified professional testing company such as Flex-Pack Engineering. If your response is you have too much volume, it is too expensive, and the timing for results doesn’t fit anymore – you need answers now not later – then we understand you have a need for an in-house laboratory.
Next we will inquire what are the important flexible packaging tests that you need to perform, where is your bottleneck in getting the answers you need quickly. This will help us determine what testing you need to perform and what equipment to recommend to do those tests. Typically, we will implement a good, better, best approach when recommending testing equipment to provide our customers with budgetary as well as performance choices. We then must explore where you are going to put this sensitive equipment because it needs to be in a controlled environment. You can’t just put the equipment out on the plant floor and hope for the best.
Finally, we explore with you who is going to do the testing, do they have the necessary knowledge, experience and expertise to perform the tests and make recommendations based on the results. Flex-Pack can help in this process by both training your staff as well as performing and managing the testing until your team is ready to take over.
Ready to have a conversation about setting up an in-house lab? Give Flex-Pack Engineering a call today at 330-704-9436 or fill out our request form on this page.