The global market for advanced packaging solutions for food and beverages is expected to grow to nearly US$44.3 billion in 2017 after increasing at a CAGR of 5.8%. The market was dominated by controlled packaging, which had sales of nearly US$12.4 billion in 2011 and expected to reach nearly US$17.6 billion in 2017 with a CAGR of 6%, as per BCC Research. The global market for advanced packaging solutions that includes active, controlled, intelligent packaging, and advanced packaging components was at US$31.4 billion in 2011. The expected CAGR for controlled packaging is 6% from 2012 through 2017, resulting in a projected market value of US$17.6 billion in 2017. Active packaging was next in market share in 2011 with nearly US$8.8 billion in sales; the anticipated CAGR for this segment of advanced packaging is 5.2%, leading to a market value of US$11.9 billion in 2017. Advanced packaging components accounted for US$6.5 billion of sales in 2011, and the market value for 2017 for this segment is expected to be at around US$9.4 billion after rising at a 6.3% CAGR. The intelligent packaging sales were nearly US$3.8 billion in 2011 and could approach US$5.3 billion in 2017 with a CAGR 5.6%. Consumer packaging is a vital component of contemporary living today, with food and beverage packaging making up the largest segment. Key megatrends, such as upgraded standard of living and demand for safety, convenience, health, well-being and sustainability are creating long-term shifts affecting consumers’ lives, eating habits, and purchasing behaviors across many different markets, regions and demographics. These shifts, which started a decade or so ago, have forced a constant change of behavior in their manifestation. Globalization has had a tremendous effect as well on the regional markets; however, trends are to some extent also influenced by regional cultures, depending on the progress of the market in question. Companies engaged in manufacturing and selling food and beverage packaging must adhere as necessary to whatever regulations are in place or devised. Consumer acceptance is another key factor that manufacturers, retailers, and others involved in the industry should consider. For example, a sudden change in the regular packaging of a product such as meat or poultry might influence consumers’ purchasing of the product. Thus, the company that suddenly introduces a different packaging medium would have to provide detailed and relevant information to foster consumer acceptance of the new packaging. Increasing consumer demand for fresh and unaltered food has driven the integration of active packaging in the food and beverages industry. Active packaging uses a variety of techniques. Regional markets for active packaging of food and beverages have grown due to consumer preference for minimally processed foods that employ minimal or no preservatives. The convergence of global factors such as eating habits, health awareness, stress factors due to an overnight work culture, stricter regulations on food safety, and others have added to the transformation of food packaging. These factors have driven the growth of active packaging techniques in all regions. Controlled packaging of food and beverages in the regional markets grew well during the examined period of 2010 to 2012. There is an expectation of sustained growth for controlled packaging in all regions, since the packaging techniques are focused primarily on retaining the freshness of everyday consumable products such as fresh produce (fruits and vegetables), dairy products, and other preprocessed foods for a particular segment of people. The intelligent packaging market across all regions – North America, Europe, and emerging markets – increased substantially from 2010 to 2012 and is expected to sustain this growth for the next four to five years. A number of portentous activities, such as collaborative efforts and new product development in the Asia-Pacific region as well as in the European and North American markets, were witnessed.
Flexible packaging converters have been leaders in active and intelligent packaging for the past decade. The Freedonia Group projects growth in active packaging to be 6.5% per year to US$1.9 billion in 2015. Advances in gas scavenger technology in food and pharmaceutical packaging are the drivers. Consumer preferences for more natural products with no or less preservatives are creating opportunities for packages that offer longer shelf lives for both fresh and processed foods. Intelligent packaging, that is more a marketing and sales enhancing tool, currently comes in the form of QR codes and 2D barcodes that aid the brand in communicating with the customer. Freedonia projects expansion of this group now at 20% annually to US$370 million in 2015. Intelligent packaging require frequent package design changes to keep their promotions ‘fresh and engaging’ for the consumer. Heavy users of flexible packaging will us these active measures for better tracking and trace capabilities for food and other perishable products. This is significant in light of the passage of the Food Safety Modernization Act introduced in January 2011. FSMA is contamination prevention legislation that will have a large impact on food processing and packaging over the next few years. Brands and retailers are pushing for packaging and materials that help food products stay fresher longer. Source reduction initiatives are becoming increasingly valuable with initiatives taken by major retailers and brand owners to evaluate supplier packages for eco-friendliness and cost reduction. Increases in the application are also driven by continued conversions to standup pouches and flat pouches in a number of markets including sauces, dried foods and spices, as per a study by Karstedt Partners for PRIMIR.