Bulk Bags - Q & A

What is a FIBC?

A bulk bag is a large bag made out of woven polypropylene used to store and/or transport dry products. FIBC dimensions can vary based on customer needs. The bags typically hold anywhere from 2000 - 4000 lbs of product and generally placed on pallets by fork lifts using the attached corner lift loops.

Are FIBC's waterproof?

No, since a FIBC's fabric is made from woven polypropylene, the bag is not water proof.

Are bulk bags recyclable?

Yes, new FIBC's are made from 100% virgin polypropylene.

What does FIBC stand for?

Flexible Intermediate Bulk Container. Some other names that you might hear are: Bulk Bags, Big Bags, and Totes.

What are FIBC's made from?

100% virgin polypropylene

What sizes do FIBC's come in?

FIBC's come in many different sizes and styles but can be customized for your product. Most bags come with a standard base dimension of 35" x 35" but once again all bags can be customized for your product.

How do you move an FIBC?

Bulk bags can be lifted by one of the following examples:

  • 10" lift loops
  • stevedore straps
  • lifting sleeves
  • single point crane lift

The above are just a few options. Lifting options can vary and can be custom made.

How do you empty an FIBC?

FIBC's can be emptied several different ways but the most common discharge is an outlet spoutthat is attached to the bottom of the bag. Sometimes the discharge spout is inside a closure on the bottom of the bag such as a petal closure, pajama closure or star / x-cut closure. The closure is designed to protect the spout and to prevent the product from leaking / sifting out of the outlet before required. Discharge spouts can vary and can be custom made.

What is a U-Panel bag?

A U-Panel bag requires 2 seams along 2 opposite sides to create 2 panels and a "U" Panel shape.

What is a Tubular bag?

The tubular body design is ideal as a linerless option for finematerials. It is also an excellent alternative to the original four panel bag construction. Circular fabric with no side seams. Capacity is up to 4000 lbs.

What is a Four Panel bag?

A four panel bag is the original polypropylene design which has become the industry standard. The versatile four panel construction is excellent for a variety of applications. This four panel design requires seams along four seperate pieces of fabric sewn to create a four panel bag. Capacity is up to 4400 lbs.

What is a Type "A" bag?

A type "A" bag is constructed from non-treated insulating fabric. No requirements are specified for type "A" FIBC's as they are not intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres. No static protection.

  • Used safely to transport non-flammable products
  • There are to be no flammable solvents or gases present around the bag
  • DO NOT USE to transport flammable products
What is a Type "B" bag?

A type "B" bag is constructed from insulating fabric but has a breakdown voltage less than 4KV. This provision prevents the risk of energetic propagating brush discharges which can ignite dust-air mixture. Type "B" bags may be used in the presence of the combustible dusts with MIE of greater than 3mj but in the absence of flammable vapors of gases. Low breakdown voltage.

  • Used safely to transport dry, flammable powders
  • There are to be no flammable solvents or gases present around the bag
  • DO NOT USE to transport flammable products
What is a Type "C" bag?

A type "C" bag is constructed from fabrics having inter-connected conductive threads. The bag must be electrically grounded during filling and emptying.

  • Used safely to transport flammable powders
  • Used safely when flammable solvents or gases are present around the bag
  • DO NOT USE when ground connection is not present or has become damaged
What is a Type "D" bag?

A type "D" bag is constructed from antistatic fabric that includes static dissipative, antistatic yellow threads, this unique system is patented worldwide. Does not require grounding.

  • Used safely to transport flammable powders
  • Used safely when flammable solvents or gases are present around the bag
  • DO NOT USE when the surface is contaminated or coated with conductive material such as water or grease
Can FIBC's be used more than once?

FIBC's can be used more than once if you have a bag with a 6:1 SF (safety factor). Some users reuse a FIBC with a 5:1 SF but this is not recommended! If you reuse a FIBC with a 5:1 SF you have to take into consideration that the fabric might be worn down or the loops could be breaking down, etc. If you plan on using a bag more than once it is recommended that you custom order it with a 6:1 SF.

What is SWL?

SWL stands for Safe Working Load. This means that a bulk bag's safe working load is the amount of weight that the bag is rated and tested to hold safely.

What is 5:1 SF (safety factor)?

5:1 SF means that the bag is rated to hold 5 times the amount of the bags SWL. A 5:1 SF is for single use bags. Bags that are designed for multi-use are made with an increased SF ratio of 6:1.

What is an open top bag?

An open top bag is a bulk bag without a top closure. This keeps the product exposed.

What is a fill spout?

Generally a fill spout is a spout thatmeausures 14" diameter x 18" long. It is designed to minimize the dust during the filling process. Fill spouts can vary and can be custom made.

What are lift loops?

Lift loops are the way by which a forklift lifts the bag with its forks. Standard lift loops are (4) 10" (one on each corner attached to the bag). Lift loops can vary and can be custom made.

Can you use a crane to lift a bulk bag?

Yes, but you must use the correct type of lift loops designed specifically for the crane to lift the bags.

What is a stevedore strap?

A stevedore strap is a long strap that is sewn to the body of one corner of the bag attaching to the opposite corner of the bag.

How can I attach my documents to the bags?

Generally documents are attached by document pouches. Thetypical size of a document pouch is 10" x 12" and can have either a seal top opening or a standard opening. The pouches can be sewn on the bag to where the user prefers. Document pouches can vary and can be custom made.

Can I have my FIBC's printed?

Yes, FIBC's can be printed. Price is subject to number of colors and how many sides you need printed.

What is UN Certification and how long is the certificate good for?

UN Certification is a test that puts the FIBC through a set of rigourous tests such as - drop test, tear test, etc. The certificate is usually good for one year from testing.

What are food grade FIBC's?

Food grade bags are bags that are made with the intent of putting food products into the bags. Food grade bags are manufactured in an AIB (American Institute of Baking) certified facility.

Can FIBC's be stored outside?

FIBC's do have UV protection but thebags will start to break down as a result of being exposed to the sunlight. Obviously the more sunlight (and strength of sunlight) will determine how long they will last outside.

We are wanting to start to use FIBC's. How do we go about getting started?

You will need the following information:

  • Style of bag
  • Fabric weight
  • Type of top and bottom openings
  • Dimensions of the FIBC
  • Safety ratio desired
  • Weight you desire in the bag
  • How many times will the bulk bag be used
  • Any extra information that you feel is important
What is a perimeter band?

A perimeter band is a band sewn around the outside perimeter of the top of a bag, which is designed to give extra strength to loops when lifting.

What is a b-lock?

A b-lock is a spout accessory that is designed to assist in closing the spout. It is a quick and easy way to close a spout, manually regulating the flow of product.

What are baffles?

Baffles are pieces of material that are sewn to the inside corners of a bag to maintain its square shape after filling. The baffles have holes that allow the product to flow freely through them so you are not losing bag space due to baffles.

What is a diaper bottom?

A diaper bottom is a full open bottom FIBC that has a flap that covers over the open bottom. Once the flap is untied, the FIBC can be discharged quickly through the open bottom.

What is UV treatment in the bags?

UV treatment is an additive that is added to the resin during the extrusion process. It helps protect the bag from UV rays if the bags are stored outside therefore protecting the breaks from breaking down.

Are there other color choices of fabric besides white?

Yes, there are other colors of fabric that you custom order but please note that there is a minimum order qty.

What is siftproofing?

Siftproofing is to prevent product from leaking out of the bag. Since a FIBC is made from woven polypropylene there is a possibility that the product can leak out of the seams and areas where the bag is sewn. Siftproofing is sewn either along with the threaded seam or in between the fabric panels.

What different fabric weights are available?

There are several different fabric weights available but the main ones used are 5 oz, 5.5 oz, 6 oz and 6.5 oz. Usually the safe working load of the bag will determine what fabric weight will be used for making the bag.

Can FIBC's have liners and if so what options are available?

Yes, FIBC's can have liners. They are actually pretty common. They can be inserted loosely or attached to the bag. There are different types of liners for different applications, but the main two are tube liners and form fit liners.

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