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In today’s market, companies must be strategic about how they produce goods and purchase packaging for those products. From high-end, custom folding cartons to mass-produced stock boxes, choosing a manufacturer who offers a responsive, efficient production strategy makes all the difference. Make-to-order (MTO) and make-to-stock (MTS) are common types of manufacturing, while make-to-availability is a proprietary strategy developed and used by MOD-PAC. Understanding the nuances of each ensures you select the right partner and process for your packaging.

What Is MTO Manufacturing?

Make-to-order is a manufacturing process where packaging is produced only after orders are placed and received. This means specific order requirements or customizations are integrated during production. Therefore, this system is driven by authentic customer demand instead of pre-forecasted predictions to provide greater capacity for modifications and personalization while reducing inventory obsolescence and waste.

When to Choose MTO Manufacturing

MTO is best suited for companies that anticipate frequent changes to their packaging, have niche products with lower demand, or have higher-value products where customization is critical. This production strategy can result in longer lead times and limit scalability since production doesn’t begin until orders are received and/or confirmed.

What Is MTS Manufacturing?

Make-to-stock manufacturing is a production strategy based on anticipated customer demand rather than actual orders. In this situation, packaging manufacturers create packaging inventory in advance based on factors such as sales data, industry trends, and seasonality. MTS allows customers to prepare for both increases and decreases in demand, potentially minimizing stockouts and inventory obsolescence.

When to Choose MTS Manufacturing

MTS manufacturing strategies are ideal for customers with high-demand, standardized products. Having predictable demand patterns for products without much need for frequent or robust customization means packaging manufacturers can easily stabilize production when volume adjustments increase or decrease.

What Is MTA Manufacturing?

Make-to-availability is similar to the MTS production strategy. It focuses on maintaining a consistent stock available for customers, using inventory management systems to determine appropriate target stock levels, regardless of the reason for demand. MTA also allows for customization like order changes and graphic adjustments without ordered packaging becoming obsolete because only part of an order is printed at a time.

MOD-PAC uses MTA to support clients across several industries.
When to Choose MTA Manufacturing

MTA is a preferred strategy for customers selling essential or high-demand products that must be readily available to consumers. Having packaging stock already available ensures short lead times so companies can fill shelves quickly for eager consumers. This production strategy also protects cash flow, as customers won’t be charged for their orders until packaging units are shipped.