Flexible Packaging Market 2017–2027
Flexible packaging is a packaging film that is produced from flexible materials which can be used to package different shapes and size of the product. It is made up of paper, plastic, foil, sheet, laminated sheet, and metal sheet. They ensure protection from damage during transportation and storage. They increase shelf-life of the product and also reduce the production waste as it offers the least packaging possible. Flexible packaging uses fewer materials than rigid containers and also consumed less energy during production. Furthermore, it releases fewer greenhouse emissions which make a better solution for a sustainable environment.
The global flexible packaging market is projected to surpass US$ 400 billion by the end of 2027, in terms of revenue, growing at CAGR of 5.4% during the forecast period (2019 to 2027).
The rising demand for flexible packaging in the primary packaging of the product is expected to accelerate market growth. The prime function of primary packaging is to protect the product from any damage and contamination. Flexible packaging has all sorts of properties that exactly meet with the primary packaging such as lightweight, low contamination, high barrier, and keeps the product completely sealed off from the environment. Thus, flexible packaging across primary packaging is expected to augment the market growth.
Shifting preferences for flexible packaging over rigid packaging due to sustainability advantage is expected to fuel the market growth of flexible packaging. Flexible packaging offers a number of sustainability advantages such as less consumption of raw material, reduced energy usage, low greenhouse emission, and low waste produced as compared to conventional packaging formats. This makes them an ideal choice of materials across the packaging industry and is highly preferred.
Regionally, Europe dominated the global flexible packaging market in 2018, reporting 36% market share in terms of revenue, followed by North America and Asia-pacific, respectively.
Figure 1. Global Flexible Packaging Market, Revenue Share (%), By Regions, 2018
Recyclability issues associated with the flexible packaging market is a major factor expected to hinder the market growth. The multi-layers of flexible post-consumer use cannot be recycled easily. Moreover, plastic-metal packaging and plastic paper packaging are also difficult to recycle which has a negative impact on the environment. This is expected to hinder the market growth of flexible packaging.
Fluctuating prices of raw materials used in the manufacturing of flexible packaging are expected to hinder the market growth over the forecast period. Unstable prices of crude oil due to various economical factor directly impact the overall price and production of raw materials. Plastic is a key ingredient used to manufacture flexible packaging.
Increasing addition of layers into a flexible packaging structure in order to improve the functionality and economic viability of the flexible packaging is expected to offer immense growth opportunities. Moreover, the increasing advent of a new product such as high-temperature retort pouch, vacuum pouch, and stand-up pouches is encouraging flexible packaging manufacturer to introduce materials with advanced and improved properties this will favor the market growth.
Bio-based flexible packaging is gaining popularity in the market and this is expected to open new avenues to the market of flexible packaging. For instance, in July 2019, DOMO Chemicals, an engineering company, has introduced a new name for the business known as cfp flexible packaging S.p.A. The purpose of introducing new business to produce sustainable and innovative films for flexible packaging and other technical applications
Figure 2. Global Flexible Packaging Market – Opportunity Analysis
In recent past years, the market for flexible packaging has experienced numerous merger and acquisition activities, resulting in industry consolidation. Most of these events were happened in the North America and European markets. For instance, in January 2016, Huhtamaki Oyj acquired FIOMO, a.s., a manufacturer of flexible packaging based in the Czech Republic. The objective of this acquisition was to enhance the company’s manufacturing footprint in Europe.
The shift in trend from two- and three-layered films to seven- and nine-layered films due to its advantages such as extended shelf with fewer chances of contamination is expected to augment the market growth of flexible packaging film. For instance, in August 2015, Clondalkin Flexible Packaging Wentus announced the introduction of a new seven-layer barrier film under the brand name WENTOPRO for dry food products. The new film offers a high barrier against moisture and mineral oil saturated hydrocarbons (MOSH) and mineral oil aromatic hydrocarbons (MOAH).
Figure 3. Global Flexible Packaging Market, Revenue Share (%), By Material Type, in 2018
On the basis of material type, polymer dominated the global flexible packaging market in 2018 with around 60% of market share in terms of revenue, followed paper and aluminum, respectively.
Figure 4. Global Flexible Packaging Market – Value Chain Analysis
Key players operating in the global flexible packaging market are Amcor Limited, Bemis Company, Sealed Air Corporation, Berry Plastics Group, Inc., Mondi Group, Sonoco Products Co., Huhtamäki Oyj, Constantia Flexibles Gmbh, Ampac Holdings, Llc, Bischof + KleinInternational, Wipak Group, AR Packaging, Goglio Group, Schur Flexibles, Clondalkin Group, Flair Flexible Packaging Solution Cellpack Packaging, and Südpack Verpackungen
Few Recent Developments
- Bemis Company Inc.
In March 2019, Bemis Company Inc. has been honored with the Highest Achievement Award and six additional gold and silver awards by the Flexible Packaging Association (FPA) for three products. This includes Molson Coors 12 Pack Cooler Bag featuring portable convenience, ConAgra Slim Jim Premium Smoked Sticks featuring textured film technology, and JBS-Swift Printed Ovenable Meat Packaging (OvenRite) featuring oven-safe technology.
- Sealed Air Corporation
In February 2019, Sealed Air acquired flexible packaging producer MGM to expand its business in the Asia Pacific market. MGM specializes in printing and laminating, and provides flexible food packaging materials for consumer packaged goods markets in Southeast Asia as well as companies in Australia, Brunei Darussalam, and New Zealand.