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What is wrapping?

Pallet wrapping is a technique whereby thin plastic film is wrapped around a pallet or product. This can be done manually or mechanically. Various terms are used, such as wrapping, film wrapping, stretch wrapping and pallet wrapping, but they all mean the same. By means of wrapping it is possible to bundle or secure products and/or protect them against falling over, getting damaged or accumulating dirt during transport and storage.

The ultimate objective is to package products properly, without getting damaged and with the lowest (total) costs, to ship them from A to B.

Why use wrapping?

Film wrapping is a relatively inexpensive and simple to use method to secure both uniform and irregular loads. Other benefits of pallet wrapping are:

  • It is a robust, complete packaging
  • It is a relatively inexpensive transport packaging solution
  • Offers protection against dirt & damage
  • Suitable for ‘vulnerable’ products
  • Highly suitable to hold products together
  • Flexible: the tension and amount of film is often easily adjusted
  • Suitable for a wide variety of products: from boxes to doors.
  • By wrapping with a coloured film, the product is highly recognisable, or not recognisable, or obscured to prevent theft

How does it work?

A few layers of film are wrapped around the load by hand or by means of a pallet wrapper. All this provides stabilisation and protection.

In addition to wrapping by hand, there are a number of film wrappers: the turntable, arm, ring, robot and horizontal wrapper.  Each type of wrapper has its own specific characteristics. Click here for more information about our pallet wrappers.

What is a good wrapping?

A good wrap means that the film is as tight as possible around the load, without damaging the product. In addition, the stability is good, the load is connected to, for example, a pallet, there is no lose film end and the product looks presentable. All this at the lowest possible cost per pallet / load. This result is achieved by carefully managing different elements:

  • What is the load?
  • What is the needed pre-stretch?
  • What film tension is required?
  • Which wrapping pattern?
  • Which way of adhering to the pallet is needed?

What is pre-stretch?

Pre-stretch is a term that is often used in film wrapping. Pre-stretch means that the wrapping film is stretched, from 1 meter film ‘more film is made’. Pre-stretch aims to save wrapping foil and to increase the stability of the load. The amount of pre-stretch is indicated in a percentage ranging from 0% to 400%.

  • 0% pre-stretch – 1 meter of film remains 1 meter of film
  • 200% pre-stretch – 1 meter of film becomes 3 meters of film
  • 300% pre-stretch – 1 meter of film becomes 4 meters of film

By using the right pre-stretch the total savings on wrapping costs can increase to 80%! Contact us now without any obligation to calculate what savings are possible for you!


Different terms are used for the consumables. The most used are: wrapping film, stretch film and stretch foil. We use the term wrapping film.

Click here for more information about which types of film there are and which factors are of importance in choosing the right wrapping film.

Click here for the different types of stretch film from Cyklop.

Want to make savings?

Do you already have a wrapping machine? It may be sensible to have a good look at it. All too often we see that customers are not using the correct film or are not using all the capabilities of a machine. As a result, it could be that your costs per pallet are too high and that the burden on the environment is unnecessarily high.

Based on a thorough analysis we can give you free strech wrapping advice.

Contact us for more information.

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