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Sterile Medical Packaging Market Size, Share & Industry Analysis, By Material (Plastics, Glass, Metal, Paper & Paperboard), By Type (Thermoform, Trays, Sterile Bottles & Containers, Sterile Closures, Pre-Fillable Inhalers, Pre-Fillable Syringes, Vials & Ampoules, Blister & Clamshells, Bags & Pouches, Wraps), By Sterilization Method (Chemical Sterilization, Radiation Sterilization), By Application and Regional Forecast, 2019-2027

Region : Global | Format: PDF | Report ID: FBI102798



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The global sterile medical packaging market size was 31.38 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 47.89 billion by 2027, exhibiting a CAGR of 5.5% during the forecast period.

Sterilization is an important processing step performed in the healthcare industry. Hence, the use of sterile packaging products or sterile barrier systems has gained significant importance in this industry. Sterile medical packaging is the non-reusable packaging material that acts as a barrier against microbial transmission. Most of these type of packaging, such as wraps, pouches, and containers are designed to prevent the medical products from external environment and unintended transmission of infectious. Furthermore, these sterile barrier systems maintain product sterility from the point of packaging and sterilization, until the time of use. They offer beneficial properties such as tear resistance, durability, breathability, and a superior microbial barrier to keep the pharmaceuticals and medical equipment sterile throughout their lifecycle. These properties surge the demand for medical packaging in various applications ranging from in-vitro diagnostic products to surgical & medical instruments.


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Rising Adoption of Single-Use Medical Equipment to Fuel Demand

The rising contagious diseases such as coronavirus, cold, flu, tuberculosis, and SARS have led to a surge in the demand for single-use medical equipment or devices. These devices include syringes, needles, bandages, face masks, gloves, applicators, suction catheters, testing kits, and surgical sponges. As these devices are used only once they prevent the spreading of bacteria or infection from one patient to another. The packaging used for such devices needs to be very efficient in maintaining their sterility. The packaging products provide effective packaging solutions for these devices. They keep the single-use medical equipment away from moisture and chemical. These packaging solutions are available in different sizes and shapes according to the requirement of the application area. Hence, the rising demand for single-use medical equipment will fuel the market.


Increasing Demand for Sterile Packaging Systems in Healthcare Industry to Drive the Market Growth

The rising population coupled with increase in the prevalence of diseases, and the adoption of new regulations by governments to control the spread of infectious diseases are some of the major factors driving the growth of the healthcare industry. The growth of sterile medical packaging in the healthcare industry is attributed to its superior microbial barrier and durable properties. These packaging products keep the pharmaceutical and medical products sterile until the package is opened for use. Furthermore, the use of suitable sterile packaging product is very important as it allows the withdrawal of packaged contents without infection and damage. Hence, rising demand for packaging solutions in the healthcare industry will drive the market growth during the forecast period.


Stringent Regulatory Standards for the Sterile Packaging to Restrict the Market Growth

The sterile packaging systems must be designed to ensure sterility of packed contents until their point of use. Hence, stringent regulatory standards are made and implemented over sterile packaging systems manufacturing. These standards ensure that the packed devices or instruments do not face any adverse reaction or damage from packaging products or external factors. EN ISO 11607 (part 1 and part 2) is the global standard that specifies the validation requirements of medical packaging systems used for sterilized medical devices or instruments. These validation requirements are used in various steps of packaging production such as material selection, design qualification, design testing & control, and process validation. The standards are complex, hence act as a restrain for this market.


By Material Analysis

Plastics Segment to Remain the Largest Material of Sterile Medical Packaging Market

Based on material, the sterile market is segmented into plastics, glass, metal, paper & paperboard, and others. Plastic is the largest and fastest-growing raw material used in the production of sterile medical packaging. The plastics mainly preferred in medical packaging includes polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polypropylene (PP), polycarbonate (PC), high impact polystyrene (HIPS), polyethylene terephthalate (PET), and high-density polyethylene (HDPE). These plastics are an ideal choice for medical packaging solutions as they offer easy moldability, cost-effectiveness, and protective properties. They protect the packed drugs, devices, and medical instruments from damage and contaminations. Plastics find its application in thermoformed blister trays and packs, bottles, closures, pouches, vials, overwrap, and bags.

The glass is the second-largest material used in sterile medical packaging owing to its chemical and moisture resistant properties. It is a preferred material in the manufacturing of various types of medical packaging such as vials & ampoules, bottles, test tubes, and syringes.

By Type Analysis

Thermoform Trays Segment to Account for the Major Share during the Forecast Period

Based on type, the market is categorized into thermoform trays, sterile bottles & containers, vials & ampoules, pre-fillable inhalers, sterile closures, pre-fillable syringes, blister & clamshells, bags & pouches, wraps, and others. Among these packaging types, thermoform trays are majorly used sterile medical packaging systems. These are mainly produced using rigid material and have a multi-compartment to support medical equipment. These trays are used to pack sutures, implants, testing kits, and sensitive surgical items.

The pre-fillable syringes segment held the second-largest share in the market. These ready-to-fill syringes are lightweight, transparent, and break-resistant. Plastic is the preferred material used in these syringes as it can offer a glass-like appearance. The high moisture barrier property of syringes enables the long-term storage of drugs. Hence, it is suitable for multiple-dose injection therapies in various diseases. Rising the use of multiple-dose injection therapies will surge the demand for pre-fillable syringes during the forecast period.

By Sterilization Method Analysis

Chemical Sterilization Segment to be the Fastest-Growing Sterilization Method in the Sterile Medical Packaging Market

Based on the sterilization method, the market is classified into chemical sterilization, radiation sterilization, and high temperature/pressure sterilization. The chemical sterilization segment is further segmented into ethylene oxide (EtO), hydrogen peroxide, and others. Similarly, the radiation sterilization segment is segmented into gamma radiation, e-beam, and others. Further, the high temperature/pressure sterilization segment is bifurcated into steam autoclave and dry heat. The chemical sterilization segment is the fastest-growing method adopted in this market, in which ethylene oxide is the most significant chemical used for sterilization. It is an alkylating agent that disrupts the reproductive processes and cellular metabolism of microorganisms. Furthermore, it is well-suited for many materials including plastics, and glass that degrade by radiation or heat sterilization.

The radiation sterilization is the second-largest method in which gamma radiation is the largest segment. Gamma radiation method uses cobalt-60 as a radiation source that undergoes decomposition to release high energy gamma rays for sterilization and decontamination. In the sterilization process, gamma rays kill the contaminating microorganisms by breaking down bacterial DNA and inhibit bacterial division. This makes gamma radiation a reliable and viable method for the healthcare system. In high temperature/pressure sterilization, the steam autoclave is the most significant method. It is a very effective decontamination method that uses saturated steam at 121–132 °C. It is mostly used for medical devices such as surgical instruments. Hence, increasing demand for sterilization of packaging products will boost the lucrative growth of the sterile medical packaging market.

By Application Analysis

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Pharmaceutical & Biological Application to Account for Dominant Share during the Forecast Period

Based on application, the market is classified into pharmaceutical & biological, surgical & medical instruments, in-vitro diagnostic products, medical implants, and others. The pharmaceutical & biological is the dominant application in this market. The rapidly rising contagious and non-contagious diseases have led to an increase in the number of patients. This results in increasing the demand for medication and blood tests. These positive factors are expected to surge the demand for sterile medical packaging in pharmaceutical & biological application and thereby drive the market growth.     

The surgical & medical instruments segment is the rapidly growing application in the market. The surgical & medical instruments include a catheter, procedural-kits, urine and drainage bags, gloves, drapes, and gowns. These instruments are majorly used during surgical procedures and operations. Hence, rising need for surgeries and operations will increase the demand for surgical & medical instruments, and will thereby lead to the market expansion. 


North America Sterile Medical Packaging Market Size, 2019 (USD Billion)

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The sterile medical packaging market size in North America stood at USD 11.30 Billion in 2019. Based on the region, the market is categorized into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. North America holds the largest share in this market. The U.S. is the most significant contributor in this region. The growth in this region is attributed to the rising pharmaceutical industry and increasing consumer healthcare spending. The rising number of patients, owing to rapidly spreading contagious diseases such as coronavirus had led the growth of pharmaceutical industry. These factors will fuel the sterile medical packaging demand in this region.

Europe is the second-largest contributor in this market. The growth is due to the rising use of medical equipment such as thermoform trays, sterile bottles & containers, vials & ampoules, and pre-fillable syringes, in various medical applications. In Asia Pacific, China, Japan, and India are the leading contributors to the market growth. The increasing population and awareness of consumers towards healthcare requirements have boosted the healthcare industry in this region. Further, the increasing demand for in-vitro diagnostic products and medical implants will drive the sterile packaging systems demand.


Key Players Use Organic and Inorganic Growth Strategies to Maintain Their Position in the Sterile Medical Packaging Market

At present, the competitive landscape of the market depicts a semi-consolidated market with the top 15 companies accounting for major share in the market. Key players in the market have invested a considerable amount of resources in research and development of several sterile medical packaging products and technologies to produce them. A diversified product portfolio, supported by superior operational efficiency, and safe & novel technology development for sterile medical packaging applications, are the strategies used by the market leaders for their growth. The companies have adopted the strategies of expansion, new product development, and acquisition to increase their regional presence and product portfolio.



  • November 2019 – Amcor built a state-of-the-art 11-layer cast extrusion line at its Winterbourne Centre of Excellence for cast films located in Bristol, UK, with an investment of about USD 10.87 million. Along with this the company also invested in the integrated slitting and packing machinery that would process a wide range of polymer types.

  • November 2018 – Sonoco acquired Plastique Holdings, LTD, and Thermoform Engineered Quality, LLC, a global manufacturer of thermoformed packaging for medical devices, healthcare, and consumer markets. This acquisition will help Sonoco to expand its healthcare packaging business in Europe.


The sterile medical packaging market report provides a detailed analysis of the market and focuses on key aspects such as leading companies, product types, materials used in packaging, sterilization methods adopted, and leading applications of the product. Besides this, the report offers insights into the market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the aforementioned factors, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the growth of the market over recent years.

An Infographic Representation of Sterile Medical Packaging Market

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Report Scope & Segmentation



Study Period


Base Year


Forecast Period


Historical Period



  Value (USD Billion)


By Material

  • Plastics

  • Glass

  • Metal

  • Paper & Paperboard

  • Others

By Type

  • Thermoform Trays 

  • Sterile Bottles & Containers

  • Sterile Closures

  • Pre-Fillable Inhalers

  • Pre-Fillable Syringes

  • Vials & Ampoules

  • Blister & Clamshells

  • Bags & Pouches

  • Wraps

  • Others

By Sterilization Method

  • Chemical Sterilization

    • Ethylene Oxide (EtO)

    • Hydrogen Peroxide

    • Others

  • Radiation Sterilization

    • Gamma Radiation

    • E-beam

    • Others

  • High Temperature/Pressure Sterilization

    • Steam Autoclave 

    • Dry Heat

By Application

  • Pharmaceutical & Biological

  • Surgical & Medical Instruments

  • In Vitro Diagnostic Products

  • Medical Implants

  • Others

By Region

  • North America (U.S., Canada, and Mexico)

  • Europe (Germany, France, UK, Italy, Russia, and Rest of Europe)

  • Asia Pacific (China, India, Japan, South Korea, Southeast Asia, and Rest of Asia Pacific)

  • South America (Brazil, Argentina, and Rest of South America)

  • Middle East& Africa (GCC, Egypt, and Rest of the Middle East & Africa)

Frequently Asked Questions

Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 31.38 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 47.89 billion by 2027.

In 2019, the market value stood at USD 31.38 billion.

Growing at a CAGR of 5.5%, the market will exhibit significant growth in the forecast period (2020-2027).

Plastic segment is expected to be the leading segment in this market during the forecast period.

Rising adoption of single-use medical equipment is the key factor driving the market.

North America held the highest market share in 2019.

Increasing demand for sterile packaging systems in rising healthcare industry, rising spread of contagious diseases, and increasing healthcare awareness of consumers are few factors supporting the adoption for this type of packaging.

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Sterile Medical Packaging Market Size, Share and Global Industry Trend Forecast till 2026
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