A Complete Guide To Flat Bottom Coffee Pouches

Janice Kanniah
December 29, 2020
flat bottom bags

Versatile, sturdy, and cost-effective, flat bottom pouches have become a favourite among specialty coffee roasters. 

They offer a large surface area to communicate brand identity, and can be manufactured from a variety of materials, from kraft paper to polylactic acid (PLA). Custom printing gives roasters opportunity to provide an eye-catching advertisement for roasters, helping them stand out on the shelf, as well as preserving the quality of the product inside. 

Read on to find out about the unique qualities of flat bottom pouches, and why they’ve become such a popular packaging option for coffee roasters. 

 See also: How Can You Make Your Coffee Stand Out On The Shelf?

What Are Flat Bottom Pouches?

Put simply, a flat-bottom pouch is a five-sided, free-standing pouch with a flat, rectangular base. It has material for greater space and strength, known as gussets, on both the left and right side of the pouch, with a fastener on top. 

Most flat bottom pouches are made with kraft paper, aluminium, or LDPE. Some will combine two or more layers for added protection or aesthetic purposes. 

For example, coffee roasters that want to communicate a rustic look may choose kraft paper on the outside with an aluminium foil interior, which is an effective barrier against light, moisture, and oxygen.

Specialty coffee roasters can also choose to include additional features to maximise freshness and aroma, such as resealable zippers or degassing valves.

Thanks to their versatility and large printable surfaces, flat bottom pouches are popular among those with a strong brand identity. They can be customised with different finishes, colours, and designs, which can help roasters connect with customers. 

On the shelf, they act as excellent adverts for roasters, with a sturdy structure, flat front-facing side, and sufficient space for labels full of information. They’re ideal for those who want their product to stand out among a large variety of similar items.

How Do Flat Bottom Pouches Attract Customers?

According to a paper on the role of packaging in brand communication, packaging was initially intended to protect products, but has now evolved to become a marketing tool that “increases brand image, and stimulates consumer’s perceptions about the product”.  

Flat bottom pouches are highly effective at marketing the coffee they contain thanks to the five sides on which roasters can include information, from the provenance of the beans to instructions on brewing. 

When consumers glance at a bag of coffee on a shelf, your packaging only has a few seconds to make an impression. Therefore, the more advertising space you have, the more likely a consumer is to spot your product.

However, as well as helping your coffee stand out, extra space also allows you to present your brand’s “story” to the customer once they have the package in their hands.

Mike Peck is Starbucks’ Creative Director of Packaging. In an interview with Sufio, he says that each coffee is a work of art and that the packaging must reflect the artistry that goes into its contents. 

“There’s a lot of pride in our coffee. We talk about the first ten feet – where the coffee is grown – and the last ten feet when the customer receives their cup of coffee. Each coffee package design needs to reflect the artistry and pride in the bean.”

To do this, specialty roasters can include their coffee’s origin, roast profile, flavour notes, and roast date. They can also share details of their relationship with the coffee’s producers, recommended brewing methods, sustainability certifications, and recycling instructions. 

By communicating how your coffee directly benefits others in the supply chain, you’re further building your brand, and demonstrating its commitment to sustainability and transparency. 

flat bottom bags

Versatile Display Options

Delivering a bag of coffee that stands out on the shelf in a shop or café is only half the challenge for roasters; it must also attract attention once the consumer has brought it home. 

Joe Palozzi from New York City-based City of Saints Roasters says that when they designed their coffee packaging they wanted a distinctive, solid, reusable bag that looked great sitting on the kitchen counter. 

Not only does this act as an advertisement to friends and family, it ensures roasters maintain mind share, which means customers regularly think about and continue to be aware of their brand.

However, choosing a flat bottom coffee pouch also has a number of practical benefits. These pouches have wide, square bases that offer rigidity and stability when stacked upright. This is compared to the taller, narrower designs that are less sturdy and easier to knock over, which can be frustrating for consumers.

The stable design is more user-friendly and convenient, enabling consumers to access the coffee without spilling or wasting it. 

Eco-Friendly And Cost-Effective

According to Voyager Coffee Roasters, a common issue in the coffee industry is the perception that sustainability begins and ends with takeaway coffee cups.

However, growing concerns over the environmental impact of packaging for ground and whole bean coffee has led many roasters to switch to more sustainable options.

Flat bottom pouches have become a popular choice among these roasters as they are manufactured with less material when compared to other designs. They’re also lightweight and take up little room when empty, which translates into lower carbon emissions when transported. 

However, when full, flat bottom pouches can hold significantly more coffee than other designs, such as stand-up pouches, making them a cost-effective option as well as a sustainable one.

flat bottom coffee pouch

At MTPak Coffee, specialty coffee roasters can choose from a selection of sustainable materials for their flat bottom pouches, including kraft paper, rice paper, LDPE, and PLA. Thanks to its innovative design, a flat bottom pouch can hold a large amount of coffee, which makes them perfect for substantial orders.

We also offer fully customisable packaging that allows you to take advantage of all five sides of the bag. You can choose from a range of materials, plus a selection of features, including degassing valves, transparent windows, and resealable zippers.

For more information on flat bottom coffee pouches, contact our team here.

MTPak Coffee

Photo credits: Perfect Daily Grind, Angie Molina, Gisselle Guerra

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Janice Kanniah
Janice Kanniah

Janice is freelance writer based in South Africa and has written for MTPak Coffee since 2020. Her interests are in writing about sustainability, the circular economy, and the future of the environment.

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