Contact Us On: 01773 820415 or Enquire Online

Black Polythene Bags – Not Just for Bins!

When you think of black polythene bags, you can’t help but think of bin bags. And who could blame you?! There’s no more common use for black polythene than the humble refuse sack. That’s because black polythene bags can be made using 100% recycled polythene very cheaply, while still being totally effective – minimising plastic waste, providing excellent sanitation, and concealing the waste inside.

But custom black polythene bags have a world of uses beyond waste disposal, and we’re here to tell you why, of all the coloured polythene products available, black polybags are top of the list.


Zoomed photo of black polythene bags lining coloured bins on a sandy beach. The sky is vivid blue, and sand can be seen in foreground. The bins and polythene bags are in sharp focus. They are in a wooden frame.


Black polythene for medical and hazardous waste bags

In medical settings, colour-coded bags are used to categorise different types of waste. Black bags are usually designated for non-infectious, general waste in UK hospitals, for instance. This is done to match up with household waste for a reason; if this kind of waste were to flow into mainstream waste disposal channels, it wouldn’t be a big deal – but if another one of the hazardous waste bag colours were to slip in, it would be obvious to pick it out of a crowd. This immediately obvious distinction improves safety – and because general waste is the most common type of waste produced by hospitals, it also helps to cut costs and complexity.

Mailer bags

Black polythene bags are also a popular choice to use as polythene mailer bags for shipping goods in. Black postage bags provide an added layer of security and privacy during transit, which is important if items are to be left unattended at their delivery location. Plus, while polythene is a brilliant moisture and dust barrier, the opacity of black polythene also shields the contents from direct sunlight.

Agricultural Purposes: Black polythene bags are often used in agriculture for various reasons. They can be employed in cultivating certain crops that benefit from increased soil temperature, weed suppression, and moisture retention. For instance, in plant nurseries, black polythene bags are used to hold soil and seedlings, promoting healthy root growth.

Agriculture and farming

This is probably where black polythene bags are most useful, beyond bin bags. We’ve devoted an entire article to the importance of polythene in farming and agriculture, simply due to the fact that it has transformed how we produce and consume food. But black polythene bags specifically are used in agriculture for a wide variety of reasons. 

Heat absorption

Firstly, there’s physics; the colour black appears black because it absorbs more wavelengths of light (both visible and invisible to humans) than other colours.

This increase in energy from absorbing light is turned into heat. Certain crops benefit from an increased soil temperature, and black polythene bags can provide this passively – accelerating the growth cycle of certain crops and plants. This is particularly useful during cooler seasons or in regions with narrower crop growing windows.

In colder climates (like ours in the UK), black polythene bags are used to create microclimates that allow for early planting or extend the growing season – so farmers can grow crops that might not typically thrive in their region.

Opacity and transplanting

Placing black polythene bags around plants serves as an effective weed suppressant, by blocking sunlight from reaching the soil surface. This hinders the growth of weeds and reduces the competition for nutrients and moisture.

High opacity helps in other ways, too. Sensitive seedlings in plant nurseries can have specific environmental needs for healthy growth. Black polythene bags provide an ideal medium for individual plant growth, offering a controlled environment that promotes proper downward root development in a very dark environment. Bags also facilitate easy transplantation, reducing root disturbance and promoting better survival rates.

On top of all of these benefits, polythene bags act as moisture barriers – preventing the soil from drying out. This can drastically cut down water usage, a main factor for growing in areas with limited water availability.

What else can black polythene bags do?

Anything you want them to, really! Another great benefit of using black polythene is for branding and printing, where black is a core brand colour. Black makes a brilliant base for printing subtly or boldly, fitting in with a range of branding styles. It also offers high contrast visibility, which is useful for accessibility.

So, there you have it. Black polythene bags aren’t just for banana skins and nappies – but we don’t blame you for thinking they are!

Get black polythene bags, made for any application

Order black polythene bags made to your exact specifications, from NPF Packaging – a UK polythene packaging manufacturer. Get a quote now, or call us on 01773 820415 to start your order.