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FAQ - general shipping

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Can you recycle packing peanuts?

Answer: While you can't dump them in your recycling bin, there are several ways to keep your used packing peanuts from ending up in the trash.

1. Reuse them yourself
This method not only eliminates the energy needed to transport or recycle the packing peanuts, it also saves you money! Reusing packing peanuts lets you reduce your costs for packaging supplies, while reducing the amount of raw materials used to produce peanuts. Associated Bag sells several kinds of packing peanut dispensers that make it easy to reuse the peanuts you receive.

2. Give them to others to reuse
If you are unable to reuse your own packing peanuts,  there are likely many businesses in your area willing to accept them. Visit for information on businesses willing to take your used peanuts (You can also call the Plastic Loose Fill Council's Peanut Hotline at 800-828-2214). The collection sites are typically small packaging or gift shops that welcome the free packing material.

3. Recycle them
If there is no way to reuse your packing peanuts, recycling is recommended to keep them from going to a landfill. First, determine what materials can be recycled and where by contacting the department of public works in your county. For state recycling information, visit, or call 800-CLEAN-UP.  If you are going to be recycling a large quantity of peanuts, go to, or call the Alliance of Foam Packaging Recyclers at 410-451-8340.

Before you head to the recycling center, check to make sure that your peanuts are indeed recyclable. There are now biodegradable alternatives to polystyrene packing peanuts made from corn starch. While they resemble their polystyrene counterparts, they almost instantly disintegrate in water, making it easy to tell them apart. If you have this type of packing material, it can be safely disposed of by simply washing it down the drain.

Please don't hesitate to call our Customer Service Department at 800-535-9550 for further information.


Download Product Instructions

Download product instructions

Click the following links to download word document of our Heat Sealer Operation Instructions, and Pour 'N' Store Dispenser Assembly Instructions:

Heat Sealer Instructions

Pour 'N' Store Assembly Instructions


Packaging Myths

Don't Be Fooled by Packaging Myths!

We’ve explained some common packaging myths below…use this information to avoid making packaging errors:

Peanuts are always the best choice

While packaging peanuts often do a very good job of protecting the contents of a package, they are not always the best choice. Small items packed in peanuts can easily shift in transit, exposing them to possible damage. Air-filled poly pillows can often provide better protection for certain items, are lighter than peanuts, and can help reduce shipping costs. Bubble wrap provides excellent protection without the potential messiness of peanuts. And Instapak Quick® foam-filled bags are a great cushioning option for irregular or one-of-a-kind items.

You can put up to 200 lbs. in a 200 lb. test corrugated box

The rating on the bottom of a corrugated box is not the amount that the box can carry, but the amount of pressure the box can withstand while stacked or palletized. The “test” in a 200 lb. test rating is in fact an edge crush test that determines the amount of weight that can be safely placed on the edge of a sealed corrugated box.

Damaged shipments mean the packaging has failed

Even though ample packaging may be used to protect a shipment, items can sometimes be damaged through rough handling. To alert others of any special handling needs, be sure to use Associated Bag’s attention-getting shipping and handling labels. And adding our Shockwatch® and Tiltwatch® indicator labels to your packages can help determine if any improper handling has occurred in transit.

All zipper bags are watertight

While this may be true of some supermarket brands, most industrial and commercial zipper bags are in fact not, approved for use with liquids. There are several types of zipper bags, however, that are specially made to hold liquids. Bitran® leakproof zipper bags come in both a standard and a document pouch style. Be sure to ask for them when your application requires a watertight closure.

If you are unsure of the best way to protect your items, please give our packaging experts a call at 800-535-9550. They’re ready to help you make the right choices.


How do I choose the best strapping for my particular products?

Answer: Each type of strapping has certain advantages over the other, depending on the application:

Polypropylene Strapping is economical, lightweight, and quick to apply.  The embossed surface strengthens the strap deimensionally and allows for the use of inexpensive non-scored seals.  The industry standard for bundling corrugated boxes, printed material, and boxed foodstuffs, polypropylene strapping is also ideal for many other light to medium duty, bundling, unitizing, and palletizing applications.

Polyester Strapping offers the greatest strength, rigidity, and retained tension of all plastic strapping.  Smooth, weatherproof polyester won't rust or stain products, is 80% lighter than steel strapping, and uses sturdy, scored seals.  Great for heavier-duty applications like bundling luber or building materials, and rigid palletizing.

Steel Strapping is the strongest of all strapping materials.  Recommeded when high strength and shock resistance are essential.  Commonly used to bundle and palletize structural steel, building stone, and rail car shipments.  Steel's strength and durability are ideal for dealing with heavy, sharp, or hot materials.

Plese don't hesitate to call our Customer Service Department at 800-535-9550 for further information.


How to choose the best stretch film for your needs.



Super-Strong cling characteristics

High clarity for easy product identification

Resists puncture and tears

Stretchable and puncture resistant

Stores well long-term and in cold temperatures

Excellent cling characteristics

Stiffer than cast films and ideal for irregular loads

Easy, quiet release from roll


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