While safety regulations imposed on chemical containers is hiking the uptake of child resistant closures, user friendliness of closures is spawning the use of dispensing closures in food and condiment related applications. The expanding use of closures in these two application sectors is buoying the overall plastic caps and closures market. The escalating incidence of epidemics such as H1N1 has prompted the greater use of personal care and household cleaning products as well as pharmaceuticals, which, in turn, has ramped up the demand for PC, HIC, and pharmaceutical closures. New analysis from Frost & Sullivan finds that the market earned revenues of US$3.70 bln in 2009 and estimates this to reach US$4.26 bln in 2016. The shift from institutional to grocery store market for food products and condiments will bode well for the plastic caps and closure market. Similarly, product development for hot-fill applications will result in replacement of metal caps with plastic closures. With the rising heat levels leading to higher consumption of bottled water, closures used for bottled water applications have started accounting for the maximum volume in terms of unit closures. Until ten years ago, the carbonated soft drink (CSD) market had been the leading consumer of plastic closures in North America. However, with the American population becoming increasingly health conscious and preferring water, flavored drinks, and juices to CSDs, there has been a significant drop in the demand for CSD plastic caps and closures. The manufacturers of CSD closures should shift their focus to new geographical areas, with the saturation of the North American market.
"For instance, Mexicans are currently consuming large volumes of CSDs and thus, creating huge potential for CSD closures in this country," notes Menon. "Existing manufacturers in the United States and Canada could look at this region to compensate for the inadequate demand for CSD closures in their nations."