Two major types of PE are in use in the films and flexible packaging sector – LDPE (Low Density) used generally for trays and heavier duty film such as long-life bags and sacks, poly tunnels, protective sheeting, food bags etc. and HDPE (High Density) which is used for most thin gauge carrier bags, fresh produce bags and some bottles and caps.
Produced in fits and starts in the 1930s in the United Kingdom, HDPE production really took off in the 1950s in the U.S. and has skyrocketed in popularity, making it today’s most widely used type of plastic. It’s made by stringing together ethylene molecules (thus “poly” “ethylene”), which are derived predominately from natural gas resources in the U.S.
So HDPE is not only versatile, it’s popular.
Why so popular? Here’s why:
• It’s lightweight yet super strong.
• It’s impact resistant.
• It’s long lasting and weather resistant..
• It resists mold, mildew, rotting, and insects.
• It’s easily molded into nearly any shape, providing one of the primary benefits of most plastics: malleability.