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The global food packaging market size was USD 323.81 billion in 2020. The global impact of COVID-19 has been unprecedented and staggering, with these products witnessing a positive demand shock across all regions amid the pandemic. Based on our analysis, the global market exhibited a huge growth of 6.3% in 2020. The market is projected to grow from USD 338.34 billion in 2021 to USD 478.18 billion in 2028 at a CAGR of 5.1% during the 2021-2028 period. The sudden increase in CAGR is attributable to this market’s demand and growth, returning to pre-pandemic levels once the pandemic is over.
Rising consumer demand for packaged products due to the shift in eating habits and evolving lifestyles may have an imperative impact on the market. A rise in per capita disposable income and a growing population shall aid in the product demand owing to high barrier properties, shelf life, and consumer safety. There is a growing demand for natural and high‐quality foods, which are minimally processed or unprocessed, do not contain preservatives, and offer a longer shelf-life. Packaged food is used for various purposes such as barrier and contamination protection, convenience, and portion control. Sustainable packaging addresses food waste and loss reduction by safety issues by preventing food-borne diseases, chemical contamination, and preserving food quality.
An Infographic Representation of Food Packaging Market
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In order to tap potential opportunities in the growing food packaging industry, leading packaging manufacturers are strategically investing in strengthening their positions. For instance, in May 2021, Coveris Group acquired the UK-based flexible packaging manufacturer Four04 Packaging. Four04 Packaging was developing innovative solutions to retain the quality of fresh food & bakery products. With the acquisition, Coveris aims to aid strategic growth across the U.K. by increasing production capacities & product offerings.
COVID-19 Outbreak to Boost Demand for Flexible Packaging in Food Industry
As the food industry was kept under essential services by all governments, the impact of COVID-19 on the global market is lower than other manufacturing industries. Flexible packaging companies serving the sectors such as packaged foods are expected to do well during the ongoing pandemic. Changing consumer demand patterns, government measures, and stockpiling are fueling the demand for packaged food. Owing to the increased food safety crisis during the pandemic, many consumers in developing economies such as India have shifted their preference from unpacked food towards packed food. Also, the rise in e-commerce retail during the outbreak aided in the growth of domestic packaged food sales and flexible packaging for packaged foods. However, trade restrictions and supply chain disruption are limiting the growth of the global market. Mitigation strategies deployed by packaging suppliers and regional government relief packages to recover the economy are projected to boost the market's growth.
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Packaging Innovation in the Food Industry to Favor Growth
The rising innovations in packaging hold an opportunity for market growth. Packaging plays a vital role in preserving food quality and guaranteeing food safety for the shelf-life duration. Plastic packages are very useful in achieving innovative product solutions. Among various plastic packaging kinds, plastic cling film is a widely used plastic packaging today. The shift towards eco-friendly packages and advanced innovations in cling film packaging is shaping the market.
This innovation includes a wide range of packaging options: intelligent packaging, active packaging, nanocomposites, edible/biodegradable packaging, and different types of packaging design. These packaging solutions help increase market availability, inventory control, consumer education, improve shelf life and even ensure the safety and quality of the food product. Active packaging is an exceptional solution for many applications within the food industry, owing to its longer shelf life, thus reducing food wastage. Nanotechnology is a newly developing methodology that can minimize spoilage, increase food shelf life, repair the tears in packaging, ensure food safety, reduce the food shortage problem, and improve consumer health.
Rising Demand for Convenience Food to Aid Market Growth
Convenience food is majorly used due to easy portability, long shelf life, and ready to eat. These food items consist of snacks, frozen food, finger food, candy, beverages, etc. These products usually require less preparation time and are served hot in ready-to-eat containers. Rising demand for ready-to-eat snacks due to a sedentary lifestyle is expected to fuel growth in the convenience food market. Additionally, rising per capita disposable income with an increasing working population is the key factor driving the market growth. Most consumers are switching towards readily edible food, which will lead to the food packaging market growth.
Nowadays, due to the fast-moving lifestyle of consumers, there has been an increasing demand for fast food items. This high demand has caused convenience food makers to develop products with better nutritional value and less harmful effects on the body. This high demand for convenience food directly increases the demand for food packaging, thus supporting the growth of this market.
To attain sustainability, there has been increasing use of green packaging. They help reduce environmental pollution and provide a wide variety of benefits that include reducing plastic use, increasing recycling, energy conservation, and efficient transport, leading to an upsurge in industry growth.
Rapid Changing Technologies and Rising Cost of Raw Materials to Impede the Market Growth
Plastic is one of the main raw materials used for food packaging. The plastic packaging is made from synthetic polymers like polypropylene and polyethylene, manufactured from natural resources. The fluctuating price of these raw materials affects the packaging industry. Moreover, regulations developed by the government and associations over resource conservation are surging the price of these raw materials, which in turn is restraining the market growth.
The technological advancement is not supported by raw material availability, hindering technological improvement in packaging solutions. High raw materials costs are causing inaccessibility to many new packaging technologies, and companies are dependent on traditional packaging, which affects the economy and environment equally.
Costly skilled manpower is also a restraining factor in market growth. Rapid changes in technologies require highly skilled labor to work upon. Highly knowledgeable and experienced workers are required for the manufacturing of packaging materials. This, along with the high cost of the manufacturing process added to the costly manpower, is making the packaging materials highly expensive. These materials are thus available to only high economic regions where the consumers can afford good-quality packaged food.
Paper & Paperboard to Generate the Highest Revenue
On the basis of material, the market is segmented into glass, metals, paper & paperboard, wood, and plastics. Among these, the paper & paperboard segment accounts for the largest market share due to the recyclable and eco-friendly nature, versatility, and fewer carbon emissions, making it suitable for usage in food packaging. Increasing the use of paper in the packaging of various readily eatable food, fresh vegetables, and beverages is the major factor driving the market.
Glass bottles are usually used for the storage and packaging of food products for a long period or reusable items. Glass is a widely used material, which is GRAS-certified by the US FDA, as it is 100% recyclable. Glass is a widely used material, which is GRAS-certified by the US FDA, as it is 100% recyclable. Growing demand for glass packaging for food products such as milk and dairy products due to its non-reactive, recyclable, and washable characteristics is expected to substantially increase the market size.
The plastic used in packaging is the most feasible material as it is flexible, lightweight, cost-effective, does not cause splintering and protects food from damage. Most of the plastic resins used in packaging are recyclable. Flexible & rigid plastic packaging offers opportunities to innovate. For instance, modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) helps conserve food freshness, which, in turn, increases the shelf life of the product by slowing bacterial growth. Increasing consumption of beverages has led to a rise in plastic demand, which in turn may favor market growth.
Rigid Packaging to Generate the Highest Revenue in the Market
The food & packaging market is segmented into rigid, semi-rigid, and flexible, based on product. Among these packaging types, rigid packaging has the largest market share owing to its increased usage in vegetables, fruits, and other easily crushable food products. Change in consumer lifestyle and increasing consumption of bread, sausages, and other snacks, mainly in China, India, Germany, and the U.K., will foster industry demand. The burgeoning number of food retail outlets with innovative product launches may boost the market, driving the overall market size.
Semi-rigid packaging consists of plastics and cardboard, majorly used for protecting food products from humid, rot, and harsh environments. These materials are lightweight, not corrodible, shock-resistant, heat-sealable, and mostly used for microwaveable purposes.
Additionally, flexible packaging is attaining high demand due to increasing technological advancement and innovative solutions for product packaging needs. Flexible packaging uses significantly less material than rigid containers and requires less energy during the formation of packaging products. Moreover, the manufacturing process of flexible packaging produces less greenhouse gas emissions, making for a better environment. Rising demand for packaging for ensuring nutrient and flavor fortification will accelerate the market revenue. Strict government norms and growing consumer awareness about hygiene and food safety will foster industry growth, which boosts the market.
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Bakery & Confectionery to Exhibit a Significant CAGR
On the basis of application, the market is categorized into fruits & vegetables, bakery & confectionery, dairy products, meat, poultry & seafood, sauces, dressings and condiments, and others. Amongst these applications, the bakery & confectionery segment is expected to remain dominant during the forecast period. In bakery & confectionery applications, it is mainly for chewing gums, candies, toffees, and chocolates. Increasing the consumption of these food products will lead to the growth of the market.
The packaging industry has witnessed high demand due to the unique and attractive packaging for different types of products. Fruits and vegetables have perishable properties as they get spoiled when they come in contact with moisture, and thus, they require flexible packaging.
Growth in meat, poultry & seafood segments can be linked to the increasing demand for these food products from consumers. The growing population has increased the consumption of chicken, beef, pork, and seafood. Meat and its products have chemical properties, including sensory attributes, microbial flora, and natural pigments. Packaging material selection is done carefully to protect the properties of meat and its products.
Sauces and dressings always come in rigid packaging as they are non-perishable products. They come in glass bottles, sachets, plastic packets, and others used in homes, offices, and restaurants. The increasing number of restaurants may cause high demand for sauces and dressing items, thereby driving the industry's growth.
Asia Pacific Food Packaging Market Size, 2020 (USD Billion)
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Asia Pacific accounted for the highest share of the global market in 2020. The market size of Asia Pacific was USD 112.65 billion in 2020. This region is projected to remain the largest over the forecast period due to rising urban population levels and retail infrastructure development, which is expected to support the growing need for packed goods in China, Japan, and India. Growing disposable income and consumer demand for environment-friendly packaging with ease of handling and low costs may drive the demand in the region. China is a major consumer of the packaging due to various manufacturers and increasing demand for frozen food. Further, consumer spending on packaged food and improving lifestyles may fuel regional product demand.
Europe held a major share and is anticipated to witness substantial growth in the market owing to increasing demand from the food & beverage industry. Increasing demand for packaging and processed food and the change in consumer lifestyle, mainly in Germany, the U.K., and Italy, will bolster regional growth. Hectic lifestyles, increasing purchasing power parity, easy packaged food availability, and time constraints for meal preparation are key factors contributing to regional growth.
North America is expected to witness significant growth in this market. The U.S. is one of the major consumers of packaged foods, which will aid in market growth. Packaging in the U.S. is gaining immense traction due to the rapid rise in food outlets. Rising awareness of a healthy lifestyle has influenced consumers to shift to a higher quality of packaged food, which will drive the product demand.
In Latin America, Mexico and Brazil are the major countries that will support market growth. Growth in the region is mainly attributable to the growing demand for canned food. Some novel packaging tools such as Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) increase as consumers demand greater transparency and minimal processing. Brazil is a major consumer of food & beverage in Latin America. Increasing consumer inclination for natural and organic products is driving the growth of packaging industry in the country. Moreover, the continuously growing meat industry is projected to create lucrative demand for flexible food packaging during the forecast period.
The Middle East & Africa is expected to observe substantial growth in the market owing to increasing demand for dairy products and meat and poultry & seafood applications. The surge in western food culture and food service in the region indicates the increasing product demand that will lead to market growth. South Africa’s market growth can be attributed to the consumer lifestyle, which further boosted demand for packaged food in the country. Burgeoning demand for convenience food with consumer purchasing parity shall foster the regional industry growth during the forecast time period.
Key Players to Strengthen Market Position by Offering New Packaging Solutions
Major producers in the market are present in North America and Europe. Some key market players are Mondi Group, Amcor plc, Berry Global Inc., and Ball Corporation. Mondi offers sustainable packaging, produces plastic films, pulp, and paper, and manufactures and develops consumer and industrial packaging products. The company has 102 production sites in more than 33 countries. On the other hand, Amcor develops and produces packaging for various industries, including food & beverage, pharmaceutical, medical, home & personal care, and other products. The company has 250 manufacturing sites located in more than 12 countries, with its strategies consisting of differentiated capabilities and aspiration to be the global leader. In November 2020, the company announced an investment of EUR 30 Mn at Ansbach plant, Germany, to expand its product portfolio and improve its production processes. The company installed state-of-the-art machines to optimize operations and introduced a broader range of corrugated solutions for specialized and sustainable customer applications. Similarly, other key industry participants have developed strong distribution channels, product offerings, and regional presence.
The report provides qualitative and quantitative insights on this market and a detailed analysis of the market size & growth of the market. Along with this, the report provides an elaborative analysis of the market dynamics and competitive landscape. The report's key insights are Porter’s five forces, recent industry developments in the market, the regulatory scenario in crucial countries, macro, microeconomic factors, SWOT analysis, key food packaging industry trends, competitive landscape, and company profiles.
Value (USD Billion)
By Material, By Product Type, By Application, and By Geography
By Product Type
Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 323.81 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach USD 478.18 billion by 2028.
Growing at a CAGR of 5.1%, the market will exhibit steady growth in the forecast period.
The rigid packaging segment is the leading segment based on the product.
Rising demand for packaging in bakery & confectionery applications will drive the market growth.
Mondi Group, Amcor plc, Berry Global Inc., Stora Enso are a few of the leading players in the global market.
Asia Pacific had dominated the global market in 2020.
The rising demand for convenience food and confectionary food items is a significant market trend.
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