Flexible packaging is an effective and efficient packaging solution that offers a manufacturer as well as consumer various convenience benefits. They are easy to handle as it is lightweight materials and thus offer lightweight shipping and storage. They are widely used across the packaging industry due to their various advantages such as durability, resistance to crack, heat, and abrasion. Moreover, flexible packaging also helps in increasing shelf-life of the product and maintaining product quality. They offer a barrier against moisture and other foreign particles this makes them ideal for packaging of pre-cooked and processed food products. Food & beverages, personal care, pharmaceuticals, and electronic &electrical are some of the major end-user of flexible packaging.

The global flexible packaging market was estimated to be valued over US$ 250 billion in terms of revenue in 2018 and is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 5.4% during the forecast period (2019 to 2027)

Drivers

Increasing demand for lightweight and durable packaging solution is expected to fuel the market growth of flexible packaging. They are lightweight and also offer an aesthetic look to the product and also consume less space during packaging. Flexible packaging also beneficial for providing a wide range of presentation that helps to enhance the aesthetic appearance of the product and attract more customer as it offers an elegant and attractive look to the product.

Market Opportunities

The growing e-commerce economy is expected to accelerate the market growth of flexible packaging over the forecast period. According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, global e-commerce sales grew 13% in 2017, hitting an estimated US$ 29 trillion. Increase in the internet buyers purchased goods and services from domestic vendors, the share of those buying from abroad rose from 15% in 2015 to 21% in 2017. Thus, growing e-commerce sales will favor the market growth of flexible packaging.

Market Restraints

Flexible packaging is composed of thin films that do not provide as much physical protection as that of rigid packaging and this factor is projected to hamper the market growth. Moreover, the bags produced from flexible packaging for liquid products require very gentle handling during the production process as they can be easily punctured. All these factors are expected to restrict the adoption of flexible packaging and thus hindering the market growth.

Key Takeaways

On the basis of product type stand-up pouches dominated the global flexible packaging market in 2018 with around 22% of market share in terms of revenue, followed by vacuum pouches and retort pouches, respectively.

Market Trends

The growing trend of using stand-up pouches by the consumer due to the rising preference for lightweight, easy to handle and re-closeable products with an increased shelf life is propelling the market growth. Companies are focusing on introducing sustainable, lightweight, stand-up pouches with increased shelf life. For instance, in September 2015, R. Twining & Company Limited commenced the use of premade stand-up pouches for tea developed by Mondi Group. These pouches offer superior protection without loss of flavor of the tea, are easy to use and have long shelf life due to the use of high barrier laminates.

Rising trend of using pillow pouches due to its versatile design that enables easily accommodate products in liquid, solid, and powder form. Moreover, pillow pouches offer advanced features such as re-sealable feature and tear notches are also expected to increase the product demand over the forecast timeframe.

Competitive Section

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 2015, the Flexible Packaging Association awarded the company with gold and silver achievement awards for its new McCormick Skillet Sauce pouch. This new product received the Gold award for packaging excellence category and silver award for sustainability category.

Market Taxonomy

By Product Type

  • Stand-up Pouches
  • Vacuum Pouches 
  • Retort Pouches 
  • Converted Roll Stock 
  • Gusseted Bags
  • Wicketed Bags
  • Laminated Tubes
  • Squeezable Bottles 
  • Others

By Material Type

  • Polymer 
    • Polyethylene 
      • LDPE
      • HDPE
      • LLDPE
    • Polypropylene
    • BOPP
    • Cast polypropylene 
    • BOPET
    • Polyamide
    • Poly Vinyl Chloride
    • Ethylene Vinyl Alcohol
    • Poly Styrene
  • Paper
  • Aluminum 
  • Cellulosic

By Application

  • Consumer Goods
    • Food & Beverages
      • Dairy Products
      • Bakery & Confectionery
      • Ready-to-Eat Food Products
      • Frozen & Chilled Food
      • Tea
      • Others
    • Personal Care
    • Pharmaceuticals
    • Tobacco
    • Others
  • Industrial and Institutional

By Region

  • North America
  • Latin America
  • Europe
  • Asia Pacific
  • Middle East & Africa
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