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The global green packaging market size was USD 258.35 billion in 2020 and is projected to grow from USD 267.83 billion in 2021 to USD 385.34 billion in 2028, exhibiting a CAGR of 5.3% during the 2021-2028 period. The market is expected to recover slowly over the coming years and is expected to return to pre-pandemic levels. The global impact of COVID-19 has been unprecedented and staggering, with green packaging witnessing a negative demand across all regions amid the pandemic. Based on our analysis, the global market exhibited a decline of -0.61% in 2020.
Green packaging, also referred to as sustainable packaging, minimizes the use of energy and reduces the negative environmental effects of packaging. In contrast to products such as plastic and Styrofoam, green packing solutions include biodegradable and recyclable materials. Green packaging also reduces power output and diminishes the number of greenhouse emissions they produce.
Green packaging has a lower carbon footprint than conventionally used synthetic packaging, which serves to improve human and ecological sustainability in the long term. Green packaging also requires strategies for reducing the amount of waste and pollution produced during the manufacturing process. One of the market's biggest driving factors is an increasing awareness of environmental protection and sustainable living. This, along with strict government legislation for environmental sustainability and the industry trend towards using renewable resources in the production process, is catalyzing demand development.
COVID-19 Pandemic May Have a Mixed Impact on the Packaging Industry
As the coronavirus epidemic has spread largely, so has the humanitarian effect has been increased to a large extent. Several businesses that help deliver basic needs are increasingly impacted, such as supplying food and necessary resources to customers safely. Food packaging represents the main segment of operation in the packaging market.
Demand for food packing, healthcare goods, and e-commerce transportation would increase dramatically. At the same time, demand could decrease for industrial, luxury, and some B2B-transport packaging. The effect on packaging players would rely on their portfolios and their exposure to various areas, packaging end-uses, and substrates
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Increasing Demand from Paper Packaging Industry is a Vital Trend
Paper is far more commonly proposed as a plastic packaging alternative than bioplastics (for example, paper cups and bags). However, currently available statistics show that in order to serve the same purpose as its plastic equivalent, paper packaging typically needs many times more bulk. As a consequence, even in the carbon footprint, the net environmental effect of paper appears to be greater. Consumer demand for paper-based alternatives has shifted as a result of the environmental issues over the use of plastic in packaging applications. Governments and organizations are required to play a key role in changing the industry by enacting strict rules and guidelines to protect the environment and facilitate recyclable paper-based solutions.
As opposed to other materials such as metals and plastics, paper packaging materials can be quickly reused and recycled. This is why paper packaging is known as the most environmentally friendly and cost-effective form of packaging. In addition, recycling plants for paper and cardboard are now operating at top capacity and will need to extend their activities to take in more recyclable waste. Even recycled paper doesn't appear to dramatically minimize the cumulative environmental footprint of paper at the moment.
Increasing Demand for Sustainable Food Packaging to Propel Market Growth
Environmentally friendly materials are used in green packaging such as bioplastics, recyclable paper & plastics, plant-based biomaterial, organic fabrics, refurbished products. These products are easy to use and biodegradable in nature, which can easily replace traditional plastics and have a less environmental effect. These materials are non-reactive with food and keep it protected from contamination and other environmental effects. This factor is causing a high demand for green food packaging in the market.
Food technology has been an enabling factor that is a motivating force for consumers to shift towards convenience foods as these technologies are able to provide comfort food easily. Other types of technologies, such as transportation and communication, have also been significant in supporting the market growth of convenience foods, which in turn, is expected to favor the global green packaging market growth during the forecast period. Most of the packaging manufacturers are focusing on product safety and sustainability.
The increasing demand for sustainable food packaging across consumer packaged goods companies is expected to drive the preference for convenience food products. Green packaging provides various benefits such as less reliability on fossils fuels, lesser use of natural resources, increased use of recyclable products, more energy-efficient manufacturing methods, and use of renewable resources. There have been recent trends in sustainable packaging, such as edible packaging of materials with a primary focus on lowering carbon footprint and waste reduction. It is also economically appealing to both manufacturers and consumers.
The European Union significantly tightened the current packaging and packaging waste guidelines in 2018. All plastic packaging must be recyclable by 2030, with 55 percent of it being successfully recycled. Just about 30% of all plastic packaging is actually collected.
Environmental Concerns to Hamper Demand for Sustainable Packaging Solutions
There are several environmental issues related to the packaging solutions, such as the usage of degradable additives & compostable materials and recycling issues. In 2017, a series of clarifications and new policy positions on the use of degradable additives in packaging was published by the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, or ISRI. The report highlighted the points that the degradable additives have not been extensively tested, and we do not know the magnitude of the danger to the atmosphere and human health that they can pose.
Recycling firms are unable to market plastic and paper goods at rates that generate profits, in particular, because it involves a series of steps from collection to recycling, which makes it labor-intensive. So, to make up the difference, they charge additional fees. Some cities, such as Philadelphia, have begun selling their recyclables to incinerators that use the energy from incineration to fuel the electricity in the cities. Owing to the high air pollution and carbon emissions generated, this solution is far from perfect.
Many restaurants and public venues are moving to bowls and bins of plant fiber that will make customers feel positive about composting. There is no biodegradation of the fluorinated compounds used for producing this packaging. However, compostable products have been linked to dubious sources, too. For instance, the processing of some palm fiber packaging has been related to the deforestation of rainforest ecosystems in Malaysia. Such factors are expected to restrain the growth of the market in the forthcoming years.
Recycled Content Packaging Segment to Lead Market in the Near Future
On the basis of the type, the market is segmented into recycled content packaging, reusable packaging, and degradable packaging.
The recycled content packaging segment dominated the market, followed by reusable packaging. The increasing collection operation and processing capacity, combined with increased use of recycled content packaging by companies aiming to show environmental sustainability and distinguish their products, would promote gains in recycled content packaging. Efforts by industry groups, brand owners, packaging companies, and others to encourage sustainability programs to increase the recycling rates of various types of packaging materials will favor the segment’s growth.
In general, recycled plastic packaging includes pallets, bins, reservoirs, intermediate bulk containers (IBCs), reusable plastic containers (RPCs), and other handheld containers and totes, trays, and dunnage containers that transfer goods across supply chains easily and securely.
Reusable transport packaging items are primarily intended for business-to-business uses, but the rise in applications for e-commerce and home delivery opens up possibilities for the efficient use of reusable packaging for domestic transport of goods.
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Food & Beverage Segment to Dominate Backed by Easy Manufacturing and Portability
The food & beverages segment is the dominant one in the global green packaging market. Convenience food is majorly driving the demand for food & beverage packaging due to easy portability, long shelf life, and easy manufacturing. Convenience food items consist of frozen foods, snacks, finger foods, beverages, and others. The food products usually require less preparation time and are served in hot ready-to-go containers. The rising demand due to the hectic lifestyle of consumers along with the geriatric population has resulted in high use of convenience food.
The major attributes consumers look for in convenience food are nutritional value, ease of packaging, product appeal, and safety of the products. Innovative packaging and advanced technology have widened various food options which are readily available in the market, such as packaged food, frozen, chilled food, etc. Most of the packaging manufacturers are focusing on product safety and sustainability. An increase in food packaging is trending in consumer packaged goods companies, which in turn has shifted the consumer preference to convenience foods.
Many chemical suppliers are moving toward greener options by reducing the amount of plastic used in packaging. Part of the reason for the shift is customer awareness of the importance of sustainability.
Regulators are taking steps, and fast-moving consumer products (FMCG) businesses and manufacturers are proactively making ambitious promises to boost packaging sustainability and reconsider their packaging structures.
Asia Pacific Green Packaging Market Size, 2020 (USD Billion)
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Asia Pacific is expected to remain at the forefront and hold the highest position in the global green packaging market during the forecast period. The market size in Asia Pacific stood at USD 99.46 billion in 2020. This is attributable to the increasing consumption of convenience food and beverages due to the high population density. Moreover, the growing focus on sustainable packaging solutions by the green packaging manufacturers in China, India, Japan, and South Korea due to the rising environmental concern among consumers is likely to boost the regional market. The raw material used for the manufacturing of cartons, bags, boxes, and other packaging equipment is easily available in South-East Asia. This is also expected to impact the market positively.
North America is expected to showcase significant growth in the market attributed to stringent regulations supporting green and sustainable packaging. For instance, in 2017, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) organized a sustainable material management program to adopt and implement SMM policies and practices.
Europe is one of the prominent regions in the market. The increasing demand for sustainable packaging materials is driving the local market as it is relatively cost-effective and eco-friendly. Moreover, the growing R&D supporting the use and development of bioplastic by the European-based companies such as Tetrapak, Mondi Plc, and others shall drive the regional market.
Latin America is expected to showcase considerable growth during the forecast period. An increase in per capita consumption of food & beverages in countries such as Brazil, Argentina, and the Caribbean region shall aid the growth of the market.
The Middle East and Africa is expected to showcase moderate growth due to the developing economic conditions. The increasing demand for canned products due to convenience in use and extended shelf life is surging the demand for green packaging. Additionally, the local brands that provide various types of canned products are expected to boost the demand for packaging products.
Strategic Planning Adopted by Companies to Strengthen Their Market Shares
The market is fragmented in nature with the presence of various major players and some global and regional small-and-medium-sized players worldwide. Many companies are competing on the basis of the offered product quality and the technology used for the manufacturing. Major players are involved in mergers and acquisitions, developing infrastructure, expanding their manufacturing facilities, investing in research and development facilities, and are looking for opportunities to integrate vertically across the value chain.
An Infographic Representation of Green Packaging Market
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The market research report provides a detailed analysis of the market and focuses on crucial aspects such as leading companies, products, and applications. The market includes insights into market trends and highlights vital industry developments. In addition to the factors mentioned above, the report encompasses various factors that have contributed to the growth of the market over recent years. It includes historical data & forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels, and analyzes the latest market dynamics and opportunities in the industry.
Value (USD Billion)
Types, Application, & Region
Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 258.35 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach USD 385.34 billion by 2028.
In 2020, the Asia Pacific market value stood at USD 99.46 billion.
Registering a CAGR of 5.3%, the market will exhibit steady growth in the forecast period (2021-2028).
The food & beverage segment is expected to lead this market during the forecast period.
The rising demand for food & beverage packaging is a key factor driving the market growth.
Amcor Limited, Ardagh Group SA, Ball Corporation, Braskem SA, Caraustar Industries Incorporated, and Cargill Incorporated are the major players in the global market.
Asia Pacific dominated the market in terms of share in 2020.
The rising consumer demand for recycled content packaging is expected to drive the adoption of the product.
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