A new report from PMMI, The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies, finds that the flexible packaging industry, projected to reach $32.7 billion in 2015, is approaching maturity and can expect to see healthy growth and stability.
The 2015 Flexible Packaging Market Assessment Report draws on in-depth interviews with end users, materials suppliers and other industry experts who weighed in on the future of flexible packaging.
Over two-thirds (68 percent) of end user companies interviewed expect to purchase new equipment, modify existing equipment or buy used equipment to accommodate flexible packaging.
Thirty-three percent of end users expect to increase their use of flexible packaging (vs. rigid materials) over the next five years; however, 61 percent expect the ratio of flexible to rigid packaging to remain the same during that time frame. In this category, 40 percent of the companies use flexible packaging for upwards of 90 percent of their products.
Food products use the most flexible packaging, leading all vertical industries with 57 percent usage of flexible packaging compared to rigid, followed by the pharmaceutical industry at 31 percent. The beverage industry uses 25 percent flexible packaging, while 2 percent of household products are currently in flexible packaging.
The promise of cost reductions and greater strides in sustainability remain significant incentives for consumer goods manufacturers to choose flexible packaging. Downgauging to thinner, lighter packaging reduces the amount of source materials, and flexible packagingâ€™s high product-to-package ratio and light weight offer allow more units to fit into a shipment and require fewer shipments for the same amount of product. This reduces shipping costs as well as greenhouse gas emissions.
See PMMI’s related infographic below: