The most popular question a FIBC bulk bag buyer asks when they begin the process of buying a small or large quantity of bulk bags is “how much does a FIBC bulk bag cost, and what are the prices for the different types of bulk bags available?” Unfortunately, many buyers run into a road block when they research online as to how much an in-stock or a custom made FIBC bulk bag really is going to cost. This article will attempt to answer this important question, but keep in mind that FIBC bulk bag cost can vary from parts of the country.
In-stock FIBC Bulk Bag cost (Off the Shelf):
The convenience of having companies who stock common size bags is a great advantage to companies that do not go through a lot of bulk bags a year and can use a stock bag without the requirement of a lot of special features. Because the supplier of the bulk bags manufactures the bags when the cost of resin is high and low to maintain inventory, this can cause a fluctuation of FIBC bulk bag cost of stock items and customers may pay a little more for this convenience of having bags ready when needed and they don’t have to lock into a long term commitment with a company. They simply buy as needed. There are three main pricing components that help to answer the question of "how much does a FIBC bulk bag cost" when purchasing from a supplier: the specifications required of the bulk bag, the quantity needed and freight charges.
SPECIFICATIONS: The more “Bells and Whistles” you need to have on your bulk bag, the higher the FIBC bulk bag cost. For example, if you are looking for a bare bones style bag that has a full open top, no discharge and four standard lift loops with a 2000 lb capacity, the costs will be substantially lower than a coated baffled bag, with a spout top, spout bottom discharge, and a 4,000 lb capacity. The price range for the bare bones bag could be in the $6-$12 per bag, where the baffled bag range can range from $12-$16 or higher. There are specialty bulk bags being used in the industry that are more than $50 per bag. So when you call and ask how much a bag cost, you now understand why we can't just give you a price. It all depends.
QUANTITY: The more you need to be delivered at one time will greatly increase the possibility of a quantity discount and ultimately a lower FIBC bulk bag cost from your supplier. At Balcon, our minimum order is one pallet of bags which usually ranges from 75-300 bags, depending on the part type of bags. When calling your supplier, ask about quantity discounts so you know how much you need to buy to save more money. Sometimes it is an advantage buying more to get the discount if you know you will be going through the bags over a certain time period.
FREIGHT: Buying more at one time also reduces the freight cost per bag AKA delivered price. Example if freight cost $100 to ship one pallet containing 150 bags or 175 to ship 2 pallets of 300 bags. Your freight cost per bag on the first shipment would be .67/bag and .59/bag for the second shipment which is a savings of $24. This is only the difference of 1 to 2 pallets, the savings gets larger as the quantity increases. Many companies sell bulk bags and say the freight is FREE. In all cases whether it is a company claiming freight is free or not, someone will be responsible for paying the freight to the carrier that is delivering your package. It is simple, the freight is added to the sale price of the item you are buying. If we used the example above and you were buying 1 pallet of bulk bags, the sales person is going to take the starting FIBC bulk bag cost or sales price of $8.00 and add .67 to make it a delivered price of 8.67. So you can see that the seller of the bulk bag will be paying the freight service on your behalf. The other way companies include the freight is just saying the sale price of the FIBC bulk bag is $9/bag delivered. What the company has done here is already estimated freight to the farthest delivery point from their distribution center and has covered that freight. At Balcon, we like to offer the best FIBC bulk bag cost or sale price to our customers. We always ask if they want a delivered rate or want it separated from the price of the bag. It does not matter to us either way, but some companies need to have one or the other for budget purposes. We have even split billed freight on one invoice and the product on the other. But in the end, freight cost was covered. Don’t be fooled by FREE FREIGHT.
Custom Order FIBC Bulk Bag Cost:
Companies that require a custom bag where an in-stock bag will not work will typically deal with a minimum quantity requirement. The good part about a custom bag is that you get exactly what you want and do not have to alter anything at your plant to accommodate an alternative stock bag. The bad part is you usually have to wait longer for the custom bag to be produced and delivered. Factors that account for custom FIBC bulk bag and answer the question of "how much does a FIBC bulk bag cost" are: Resin cost, Manufacture Cost to Produce & location, Freight & Quantity, Storage, Specification.
RESIN COST: Resin is the main raw material used to manufacture the polypropylene thread that is woven to make the bulk bag fabric. Just like all raw material, when the cost goes up, the FIBC bulk bag costs goes up as well. At Balcon our custom order customers are provided the current rates of bulk bags based on that week’s resin cost. This allows our customers to take advantage of lower rates when they can.
MANUFACTURE PRODUCTION COST & LOCATION: Most bulk bags used in the US are made overseas or Mexico. The cost of living and wages vary drastically around the globe. Wages and cost of living in the US are higher than wages in Mexico and many parts of Asia. Therefor one can expect the a bag made in US would be much much higher than one made in Mexico. There are very few bags being made in the US due to the very high costs and typically these are specialized bags only. Today, most suppliers of bulk bags use the Mexico plants as a backup for Overseas manufactured bags due to slow freight or manufacturing time. Time is a big issue on custom bags and you need to plan accordingly. Bags made in Mexico will take 4-6 weeks where bags made overseas will take 12-16 weeks. The cost variance between the two regions could be 50% or larger. So bottom line, a bag made overseas will be much less expensive than a bag made in the US or Mexico even after you consider duties and freight.
FREIGHT & QUANTITY: I mentioned above that freight is not free. It is the same case here. When you get a container or less than a container price from a supplier, it will either include the freight in the price of the product or it will be a separate line item. If coming from US or Mexico there is no import duties required, if from Asia or other countries outside North America, duties will be a factor of the freight. For example purposes only, if a container of 10,000 bulk bags were $50,000, container freight is $5,000, and duties and customs amounted to 8% your freight cost per bag is ($5,000/10,000 = .50) and your duties fees per bag ($50,000 x .08)=$4,000/10,000 = .40. So total Freight and Duties per bag is .90/bag and your total sale per bag is 5.90. The supplier can quote it $5.00/bag FOB Plant which would not include freight and duties and would add that onto the bill once it was known The supplier can also quote it 5.90/bag delivered, which is a much preferred method by Balcon since all the burden of freight and duties is on Balcon. If the freight is held for inspection at the port or has other charges added, Balcon pays that not the customer.
QUANTITY: When customers order a full container which is typically 40ft and holds 44-48 pallets of bulk bags, that container is shipped directly from the manufacturing plant to the customer location. This is the most cost effective method of ordering bulk bags. At Balcon, if customers have several bag specifications, we allow them mix multiple specifications to fill their containers. Sometimes buyers of bulk bags have a need for a custom bulk bag, but not a need for a full container. At Balcon, we accommodate this by filling the rest of the container with Stock bags and other customer custom bags. This is still cost effective since they are buying a larger quantity, but will pay additional freight from one of our distribution centers to their location.
STORAGE: If the buyer of bulk bags does not have room for a full container or sometimes even less, the supplier of bulk bags may store the bags at their facility. Other than the added freight for deliver to your facility, In most cases this will cost extra and charges vary between each supplier. At Balcon, we do offer Free “Custom In-stock storage programs”. For more details just give us a call and we would be more than happy to explain in more detail.
SPECIFICATION: As mentioned above, the more you add to a bulk bag, the stronger and heavier it needs to be to carry the material, the more the FIBC bulk bag cost to make and the more resin it takes to make it. Bottom line, a bulk bag is not just a bulk bag. When you go buy a car you don’t ask how much all the cars are in the lot, you can tell that each car has different characteristics that cause the car to be more or less expensive and you buy the one that has all the “Bell and Whistles” that best fits your needs.
I hope this has answered your questions as to what goes into answering a the question of “how much does a FIBC bulk bag cost ?” Feel free to send a response or email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any additional questions or comments.