Top 5 Uses for Polyethylene – The Everything You Need To Know Guide


About Polyethylene

Polyethylene is by far the most popular type of plastic used in the world today. It has many uses and most of the household items that we use in our everyday lives come from Polyethylene.

Polyethylene is also used in the manufacturing of certain chemicals that are common in certain cleaners and other drugs.

Due to the news coverage most people know of Polyethylene as Polyethylene Glycol, though it is not as common as the plastics that Polyethylene is used to make.

The next time you are at the supermarket or a big retail store, take a look at the products that you are buying, more than likely you will notice Polyethylene is most of them, especially if they are made of plastic.

If you are concerned about the safety of the plastics used in many of your household necessities, then you should keep an eye out for products that contain Polyethylene.

Plastics derived from Polyethylene are safer than most other plastic products which are derived from other sources.

Common Uses of Polyethylene

Listed below are the top 5 most common uses for Polyethylene. These are the products containing Polyethylene which you are most likely to find already in your home and at the local supermarket.

Sandwich Bags

At some point in our lives, everyone has used sandwich bags for one reason or another. What you may not know is that Polyethylene is used in the manufacturing process of these bags.

The polyethylene is used to make the plastic film that will eventually become the sandwich bags.

It is also used in the sandwich bags cousin, the freezer bag. More of a heavy duty polyethylene plastic is used in the freezer bags, as they need to be able to with stand extreme cold and still be able to protect the items within.

Cling Wrap

Almost every cling wrap you purchase at the supermarket is made from Polyethylene. The Polyethylene combined with other materials helps to make the cling wrap work and keep its hold.

While the cling wrap itself is actually very thin, low density Polyethylene is not used in its production.

Instead, during the manufacturing process the Polyethylene is stretched multiple times to give the cling wrap its normal, thin appearance.

Moisture Barriers

The moisture barriers they use on construction sites and those that are used in crawl spaces under houses are made from Polyethylene.

Low density Polyethylene is not used in the manufacturing of these items, due to the fact that they need the highest quality of Polyethylene available to make sure that the areas are secured from any moisture getting inside.

You can also see non-moisture barriers made from Polyethylene on construction sites, and those are used to keep people out of certain areas or to help protect areas from damaging winds, dirt, or any other material that the workers want to keep off of the site.

Food Packaging

No doubt you have been in the supermarket and found yourself searching for the best pack of ground beef or chicken.

You may notice that there is plastic wrapped around the meat to help keep it fresh before it can be sold and used.

That plastic wrapping is Polyethylene in a low density form. It is used to help make sure that the meat you are purchasing stays fresh until you can get it home and either freeze it or cook it.

The plastic wrapper is tightly fitted onto the packaging so that no other food particles or bacteria can contaminate the meats you are buying.

It can also be used in bakery wrapping to keep bread and other perishable sweet treats from spoiling before they can be sold and used.

You may notice that the bakery bags are a little different from the plastic wraps over your chicken, and that is due to the quality of Polyethylene that is used to make them. However, they both perform the same duty and keep your food fresh and contaminate free.


Polyethylene is also used to make the coatings that you see on fruit juice boxes. Though the container is mostly made of out cardboard type material with a small amount of plastic mixed in, the outer coating that keeps the box from falling apart once the liquid has been introduced is the Polyethylene.

It may look like a shiny coating for the box, but it is actually keeping that box tightly together so that kids can enjoy their juice boxes.

It is also used in the wrapping for the straw, and if you buy the juice boxes wrapped instead of in a large box, Polyethylene is also used to make the wrapping for the box.

Most of the time you will see the juice boxes being wrapped when you purchase them from a larger grocery chain.

Almost anything that is either wrapped in plastic or coated in plastic is made from polyethylene.

Polyethylene is made into millions of products every year, most of which we as consumers use on an everyday basis.

And if you are like most people, you did not realize the number of items that can be made from Polyethylene, but it is actually the number one used plastic in the world.

You would be surprised if you looked around at the world today and actually noticed everything that is made from Polyethylene.

Companies are even using it to make cable insulators to keep moisture and animals off of the actual cable wires.

Right now, low density Polyethylene is gaining a lot of ground and is being used in more and more places around the world.

Though it is mainly used in the manufacturing of coatings and cable insulators, it is also being considered for another large industry.

Manufacturers of plastic toys have been looking into using low density Polyethylene to create their toys.

Polyethylene is also being considered in the manufacturing of more household goods, though some household goods are already using the plastic.

So the next time you see a plastic product, check to see if it was made from Polyethylene, you just might be surprised to find that it is.


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