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Bulk bags are lightweight but incredibly strong, however they need protection from two things: sunlight and sharp objects. You need to know how to deal with these issues and get the most out of your bulk packaging products in order to protect your investment. This knowledge will save you money.

These are extremely strong and durable packaging products. Just two kilograms of properly constructed polymers can transport up to two tonnes of material safely and easily. That is an outstanding achievement for design and production. 

Custom Bulk Bags are tough; the minimum ISO safety factor rating is 5:1, which means that a bulk bag with a safe working load of 1000kg will not fail in design testing unless a minimum of 5000 kg of force is applied. 

Custom Bulk Bags is a major manufacturer and supplier of bulk bags in South Africa. We produce up to 3.5 million bulk bags per year. Our products can safely hold between 500kg and two tonnes of material per bag, depending on your specifications. We also offer numerous optional extras, including UV coatings that will extend the shelf life of your bulk bags.

A blue forklift picking up a loaded bulk bag from a large stack inside a warehouse

Protection against sunlight and UV degradation

Have you ever noticed what happens to plastic when it is exposed to sunlight for a lengthy period of time? The plastic becomes brittle and faded, which is obviously not ideal when it needs to hold massive quantities of material.

UV rays have a significant impact on all thermoplastic polymers. Over-exposure to sunlight can change your durable and flexible bulk bag into a fragile material. The first sign of weakness is a faded colour and minute cracks in the woven polypropylene tapes.

So, how can you protect your elegantly branded bulk bags from becoming damaged by the sun? The first step in preserving the life of a bulk bag is to use a UV coated fabric. A bulk bag constructed to ISO standards will have all load-bearing elements treated with a UV coating that slows down weathering and ageing. 

In addition to sticking to the proper manufacturing standards for bulk bags, most suppliers will include a handling notice to avoid storing bulk bags in direct sunlight for extended periods of time. This informs users of the proper protection procedures.

In work environments where UV exposure is unavoidable, then there are a few ways to prolong the shelf life of your bulk bags further. Tarping, capping and material colour selection are all examples of how to give your bulk bags a fighting chance against the sun.

A fully loaded bulk bag on the floor of a warehouse with sunlight beaming through the window onto the fabric.

Protection against sharp objects

While bulk bags are extremely durable when used properly, their individual components can be damaged. Parts of the bag that come into contact with forklifts, cranes, or other handling equipment can be scored, scraped or cut. The simplest thing you can do to avoid failures at your facility is to verify that your equipment is set up for safe handling of bulk bags.

One of the most prevalent causes of damage is lifting bulk bags with forklift tines that have overly sharp or rough edges. The slightest metal burr or sharpened edge can be extremely damaging to the bulk bag lifting loops, especially when applying pressure while entering or exiting the loops. 

The loops may not fail at first, but they suffer abrasion damage that can lead to failure on future lifts. To avoid this damage, forks should be rounded to a minimum 5mm corner radius. When you introduce a new set of forks into your operation, make sure you file the edges properly. Inspect the forks on a regular basis for burrs that could harm bulk bags. This is especially critical if your equipment lifts a variety of materials.

Custom Bulk Bags prides itself on high-quality products combined with exceptional customer service. Our expert consultants are always available to guide you through the ordering process to ensure that your bulk bags are designed to meet your needs. We will recommend UV-coatings and other protection measures where necessary.

We supply bulk bags to various customers throughout South Africa and have a strong track record for timeous delivery. For more information about our bulk bags or to get advice on the ideal design specifications, please contact us today.


Custom Bulk Bags is a leading South African manufacturer of woven polypropylene bags for various industries, such as mining, chemicals and food. We are able to produce over 3.5-million bulk bags per year, keeping our customers in stock at all times. Our bags adhere to the highest levels of quality as a result of our stringent in-house testing and quality control programmes.

Custom Bulk Bags holds ISO 9001 certification and we currently have a number of UN-certified designs. We are a Level 2 B-BBEE manufacturer and supplier and fall under the ownership structure of Deneb Investments Limited. For more information on our products, contact Follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram for our latest news and industry insights.