Brentwood Plastics Blog

PPE Isolation Gowns and Coveralls Simplified

In only a few weeks, PPE has become part of the common lexicon.  Isolation gowns are fortunately not as in high demand as projected just a few weeks ago.  Hospital supply chain managers are now thinking in terms of being prepared for summer and fall surges and stocking up for the next round.  The term isolation gown […]


Verbal shorthand when thrown around casually can lead to misunderstandings especially to an industry insider who takes these terms literally. 

Plastic – a Weapon vs. Coronavirus

In a crisis, political correctness and platitudes get relegated to abeyance. Only weeks ago the bane of our existence was plastics. 

Plastic Films Substitution

Everybody wants replacements for politically incorrect plastic films to be exactly like the original.  No property trade-offs.  No exaggeration.    Would

PE Film Lead Time Factors

The ship date for custom PE film involves much more than a first-come-first-serve queue.  An extruder who runs their backlog

Post Consumer Recycled Content ” Gen

Giant retailers and consumer product companies are frantic to be perceived as green and sustainable.  Meantime, the major plastic resin

Plastic Shortages

Part of Harvey’s aftermath will be a shortage of plastics.  The general public cannot see it yet.  Many plastic processors

PE Resin in the Age of

While spring cleaning, we found a cache of 1960’s era letters from Union Carbide.   The letters were from big

Designing for Recycling and Sustainability

Cradle-to-Cradle, Recyclability, Sustainability and reclamation have historically been low priorities in design considerations.  The biggest obstacle to these goals is

Multilayer Packaging Lexicon

Humans like to communicate in acronyms, abbreviations and inside lingo.   After I set up an appointment for a medical

Developing Custom Plastic Films

Product development is a rough, bumpy ride with no certain outcome. It’s always a bracketing process which requires many iterations no

Poly Film Industry Consolidation

Like any industry which matures, there is first a dynamic growth curve followed by the inevitable consolidation wave.  The blown PE

PE Film Make / Buy Decision

It’s cliche but true – when milk is cheap, why buy a cow ?  Peter Drucker said it is better

Buy American / Hire American ?

When George W. Bush asked the premier of China what kept the premier up at night, the response was “finding

Factors Determining Shelf Life

Shelf life is subjective.   The definition of “use by” or “sell by” date depends on criteria and varying degrees of

High Density HMWDPE Conundrum

The acronyms HMWHDPE and  UHMWHDPE are confusing.  This discussion breaks down high molecular weight jargon. Starting with the MW bit

What Is Polyethylene?

Polyethylene is comprised of long chains of the building block ethylene monomer. Ethylene monomerC2H4 ( or just “C2” for short )

Packaging Film Blame Game

A plastic film spec properly crafted by a packaging machine manufacturer ensures that the film can always be blamed  That’s

Why Recycled Plastic Content is not

“Recycled Content” must score well in focus groups.  What else could explain why we are getting more requests for recycled

Prime vs. Off Grade Plastic Resins

Plastic resins are made by major petrochemical companies.  The choicest cuts are sold by their direct sales force or through

Surlyn – sometimes there is no

Surlyn is the most effective, forgiving sealant layer ever invented. What makes it so effective ?  Why the search for alternatives?

Odor and Taste / Leachables and

Leachables & extractables / odor & taste transfer in packaging have been a perennial source of controversy and product rejections.

EPR Extended Producer Responsibility – You

Extended Producer Responsibility ( EPR ) and product stewardship are ideas which are gaining traction globally.  Vilifying corporations may be satisfying

Homopolymers, Copolymers and Terpolymers – easy

The terms homopolymer, copolymer and terpolymer may sound like Latin or Greek.  They mean respectively 1,2, or 3 polymers.  This

The Fine Art of the Sabotage

Sabotage specs are written wholesale every day. Not much is written about why and how to write a sabotage spec.

Visqueen Construction Film

We do not make Visqueen or any film in 100 foot rolls.   Please do not inquire.  Scroll down for a

No Plastic Clean Enough

What is it about the connotation of fossil fuels anyway ?  Are we supposed to just accept the premise that

What is poly LDPE shrink film?

Plastic shrink wrap is thermoplastic extruded and oriented so that when exposed to heat, it retracts and tries to return

What Plastic does not contain is

The metastasizing list of chemicals we must certify that our plastic does not contain is growing.  To say it’s absurd

Plastic Film Property Trade-Offs

Plastic FIlms like many things, trade off one property at the expense of another.  If polyethylene film has not been

Creep in PE films

Creep is the tendency of a material to flow in the solid state.  Wikipedia defines it more accurately as deformation

Melt Fracture in PE film

Melt fracture a/k/a “sharkskin” or “applesauce” occurs in LLDPE film. To say that much has been written on the subject

Yellow Dye Concerns, Lead Apathy

Consumers are apathetic about dermal absorbtion of lead if the price is low enough. Absorption of yellow dye may result in

BHT in Polyethylene Film

Customers continue to ask us for assurances that our PE films do not contain BHT.  The reason they ask is

PE film tin canning

“Tin canning” describes the longitudinal ridges which often appear in low density LDPE polyethylene film – usually blown PE film. For

PVC replacement is complex

 PVC replacement is not as simple as finding a polymer which passes the “duck” test at a lower price.  PVC

Timing is crucial to biodegradable plastics

Our 4 year oxobiodegradable bag is breaking down.  The reusable bag we made from plain LDPE while George H W

Clear Polyethylene Film

The not subjective definition of LDPE film clarity is ASTM D 1003 which measures haze.  Haze is a measure of

Poly Film Thickness vs. Poly Film

Point-to-point variation is different than the area derived from a specific amount ( weight ) of PE film.  The word for total amount

Barrier Films depends on the context

Barrier films and barrier packaging definitions are all relative. The term “barrier” is often used loosely ranging from a moisture

BPA free is irrelevant to most

The truth about the hysteria over whether the BPA residue is real or contrived is up for grabs.  Manufacturers and

LLDPE Linear Low Density Polyethylene Varieties

As with all polymers Linear Low Density Polyethylene LLDPE has a tremendous variation within the species.This article explains the differences

Plastic Film Thickness Variation

While plastic film made by the blown film process can be controlled closely, there are limitations imposed by the interdependent

Fracking shale gas – how it

Feedstocks are the major drivers of the price of plastics.  Whether you are for or against fracking, it has had

Is plastic from oil? What is

Plastic POLYmers are made from building block MONOmers.  The naturally occurring monomers (feedstocks ) can be derived from plants, coal,

The Truth About Coextruded Film Packaging

A properly designed machine has no unnecessary parts.  Anybody who makes coextruded multilayer plastic films will tell you a simple monolayer plastic film

Thicker plastic film is not always

The shortest route to a good sustainability scorecard is source reduction. New resins get the job done using less wall

What is Regular Poly Film? is

Asking for ” regular poly” film is like asking for a regular car, beer, soda, tape or wine.  The variation

PE films – Why is PE

Polyethylene blown film does not have to be inconsistent. If your low priced PE film is inconsistent within the same

EVA and PEVA – be specific

EVA and PEVA are both acronyms for Ethylene Vinyl Acetate.  Somehow the P for polyethylene was added to create the acronym

Green Wash – What is Green

Greenwashing is ubiquitous. Claims of plastic biodegradability are vague and play into the public’s emphasis on end-of-life. The FTC lags

Polyethylene Density

The properties of polyethylene are most affected by the density of polyethylene. Without going into the vagaries of molecular weights and

Carbon in PE film

Carbon specs in polyethylene LDPE film are inevitable.  I had to explain this to yet another prospective customer who has

Polyethylene Resin Factors of Production

In addition to the cliche supply and demand, the price for plastics depends on the factors of feedstock, or monomer,

Metallocene VS EVA

In it’s day, ethylene vinyl acetate ( EVA / PEVA ) was a game changer.  It enhances physical properties and sealability. 

FDA Approved Packaging – what does

Everybody knows the final arbiter of prolonged and direct food contact is the FDA food additives act of 1958 sections

PEVA film is not the only

PEVA materials are not the only PVC substitute film. PEVA film is a popular substitute where PVC has been banned mainly because it is what

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