The global market for beverage packaging is projected to reach US$118.8 bln by the year 2017, with beverage consumption trends and environmental issues influencing the demand scenario, as per Global Industry Analysts, Inc. In addition, the advent of innovative and convenient packaging formats using minimal resources is likely to foster consumption of various beverage packaging material and formats. Beverage packaging is available in several formats including plastic bottles, metal cans, paperboard, cartons and pouches for use in a wide variety of beverages ranging from carbonated soft drinks to beer and milk. Consumption trends related to various commercial beverages and consumer preferences are critical driving factors for the beverage packaging market. The global economic meltdown, and volatility in energy and packaging material prices have transformed consumers’ purchasing behavior in favor of minimizing overall expenditure, a shift that is particularly evident across developed countries. The recession fuelled consumer interest in low-cost products, a trend that is expected to last beyond the recession. Despite such conditions, consumer concerns pertaining to personal health and wellness, and environment continue to foster innovations in the field of food and beverage packaging. Rising material prices and extreme pressure due to economic downturn is driving global brands to focus on developing new products and packaging designs, aimed specifically at the budget-conscious consumers. In the wake of economic slowdown, the packaging design of beverages has reflected a continuous shift in favor of materials reduction, environmental performance and weight-reduction.
The United States, Europe and Asia-Pacific collectively accounted for a lion’s share of the global beverage packaging market. Developing economies are expected to register strong growth in the near future driven by rising income levels and changing consumer lifestyle that is in turn fostering demand for packaged drinks. Asia-Pacific countries, particularly China and India, offer maximum growth opportunities for beverage packaging manufacturers due to the continuous rise in consumption of beverages. Plastics continue to maintain the lead in beverage packaging market owing to the consumer preference for single-serve portions, enhanced visual appeal, and portability. These factors have led beverage marketers to focus on utilizing pouches and plastic bottles benefiting from plastics’ lightweight and recycle characteristics, as well as the efficient manufacturing technologies associated with the formats. Several beverage marketers are opting for plastic packaging to achieve product differentiation, and cost and environmental benefits. Metal containers are widely used in the packaging of beer and soft drinks. Potential opportunities are anticipated in the rapidly growing beverage categories of 8-ounce soft drink cans and energy drinks. The demand for aluminum bottles is also projected to rise in the coming years owing to incorporation of novel, upscale features in the design, enabling the product to be differentiated in the market. On the other hand, the demand for glass packaging is anticipated led by the sustained demand for bottles from wines packaging market. Growth opportunities are also anticipated from the ready-to-drink teas and other non-alcoholic beverages categories. The positioning of glass as a premium packaging is expected to prove beneficial for the marketing of such products.
Although the overall packaging industry was severely impacted by the economic recession, the beverage packaging market is gradually gaining significance through the latest technologies and enhanced products, as per Visiongain. The global beverage packaging market is a steadily growing market which is expected to follow a modest growth rate in mature markets and a progressive above-average growth rate in emerging markets. Visiongain calculates that the global beverage packaging market will reach US$101 billion in 2013. Whilst the recession impacted demand for all types of packaging, upcoming environmental issues, changing consumer needs, high disposable incomes and improved packaging products, have resulted in sturdy growth for beverage packaging. The global beverage packaging market and in particular, the plastic beverage packaging market is expected to demonstrate solid growth.
The emerging economies, which in total maintained positive growth during the crisis, will continue to register strong growth, driving demand for sustainable, lightweight, user-friendly and enhanced packaging products in the coming decade. Plastics have increasingly replaced traditional materials in the packaging industry because of their lightweight and superior functionality. Although the consumption of flexible plastic packaging is growing at a rapid pace, rigid plastic packaging still holds the largest share of the market. However traditional materials such as glass, metal, and paper will continue to occupy sizeable positions within the marketplace. Much of the beverage packaging market stands immune to the recent economic downturn as technological advancements related to lightweight, convenient and sustainable packaging will retain its demand in the industry. Furthermore, key industry players and manufacturers are opting for materials made from renewable sources for packaging purposes thus keeping them out of the landfills. Environmental-friendliness and sustainability have become basic qualifying criterions for all packaging products. In this regard, some materials within the beverage packaging market are at a distinctive advantage due to reasons of recycling infrastructure already in place or because of innovative progression amongst products and materials.
The global beverage packaging industry is expected to exhibit solid growth, driven by three major drivers - escalating demand for sustainable packaging solutions; healthier and better lifestyles worldwide; and rapidly developing emerging markets with improved disposable incomes and growing consumer demand for packaging across all submarkets.