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Types of Medical Foam and Why Janco Uses Zote and Volara Foams

At Janco, we understand each manufacturing customer has specifications they need met exactly right every time. This is especially crucial for medical manufacturing and packaging. It’s why we take a customized approach to working with clients.

It’s also how Janco became a valuable customer resource for medical packaging expertise. We’ve helped customers select the right materials, source materials, create designs and prototypes and have provided advice on FDA regulations.

In this post, we’ll share our 60 years of experience in choosing foam materials for medical packaging, including Volara and Zote foam sheets, our foam brands of choice.

What is medical grade foam?

The term “medical grade foam” is not a technical term, but refers to a large category of foams used in the manufacturing of medical devices and packaging. Generally speaking, foams approved for medical applications must have at least one of the following:

  • ISO 10993 biocompatibility standards certification
  • FDA approval
  • USP classification

At Janco, we use polyethylene closed-cell foams for our medical packaging and manufacturing applications. We rely on this type of foam because it is:

  • High quality, durable and will not tear, yet is still light, which is great for packaging.
  • Easy to process and good for applications that require converting, such as thermoforming, and die cutting.
  • Approved for certain modes of sterilization.
  • Non-particulating, meaning it won’t shed tiny particles that could contaminate a clean room environment.

We typically source polyethylene closed-cell foams from Volara and Zote because they provide the highest quality products and meet the standards our customers need to adhere to FDA requirements.

About Volara foam

Volara foam sheets are manufactured by Sekisui Voltek, a company based in Coldwater, Michigan that’s been producing high-quality cross-linked, closed-cell polyolefin foams for 50 years.

Volara’s characteristics include:

  • Smooth surface
  • Consistent density
  • Resistant to most chemicals
  • Low water absorption
  • Low vapor transmission rate
  • Can be used in medical applications as well as industrial, such as automotive and athletic equipment industries.

Janco is a supplier of Volara foam sheets, which means it has it on hand for your next project. Supply chain issues have caused problems for companies in recent years, so our position gives the companies we work with a unique advantage when it comes to how we source, supply materials for both high-volume and low-volume production.

About Zotefoams

Zotefoam sheets are produced by Zotefoams, the world’s largest manufacturer of lightweight crosslinked polyolefin block foams for a wide range of industries, including the biotech, pharmaceutical and medical industries.

Zotefoams are known for:

  • Resistance to fire and high-temperature environments
  • Insulation and vibration dampening capabilities
  • Resistance to chemicals
  • Durability
  • Effective cushioning
  • Easy to process and good for applications that require converting, such as medical packaging.

These attributes make it especially well-suited for medical packaging. They are light, durable and protect sensitive devices from both contaminants and breaking. Janco is also a Zotefoams supplier and has it available for packaging projects.

Janco medical foam capabilities and uses

At Janco, our decades of experience working with medical and industrial foams has taught us a thing or two. Not only do we provide extensive expertise, but we also offer a range of capabilities, including:

  • Compression molding
  • Thermoforming
  • Die cutting
  • Laminating
  • RF Sealing

We use these processes to create medical trays and packaging for a variety of medical devices. It’s especially common for packaging of delicate instruments because of the foam’s insulation and vibration dampening characteristics.

Contact us today about your packaging needs.

Whatever your need, Janco is here to help you select the right foam and medical packaging design for your product. Over the past 60 years, we’ve developed long-lasting partnerships with leading foam manufacturers to ensure our customers always have access to the best materials on the market.

Want to know more about Janco’s capabilities and how we can meet your packaging needs? Reach out today.

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