N° 617 - Packaging - Actualité





Flexible and clean : a growing demand for plastic films
Packaging is supposed to be light and handy, neat and durable, microwaveable, and also environmentally friendly. The requirements for manufacturers increase constantly. Yet, these efforts are worth it, reports Oliver Kutsch, CEO of the market research company Ceresana : "Sales of plastic films will presumably reach a volume of about 250 billion US dollars until 2024". Ceresana analyzed the global market for flexible plastic films of all kinds already for the second time. These include besides packaging, such as bags and sacks, also films for, e.g., agriculture, the construction industry, and technical applications.


Innovative, fast, appealing
Digital printing offers new possibilities for the design of packaging. Precondition for this is, however, that it is easy, fast, and optically of high quality to print on the films. Increasingly complex packaging is especially in demand for pharmaceutical products and fresh foodstuffs. MAP conserves foodstuffs with an artificial protective atmosphere from fast decay. Microwaveable packaging is a growing segment as well as stand-up pouches or individual packaging that offer a better dosing and durability. The market for packaging that is considered ecological is growing particularly rapidly. Ceresana forecasts demand for bioplastics for packaging to increase by more than 15% per year in Europe alone. Films made of recycled plastics will increase as well. Yet, more conventional materials remain in demand as well : the analysts expect a growth by, on average, 4.0% p.a. in the near future for global demand for polypropylene films (BOPP).


Considerable regional differences
Besides the trends of the packaging market, numerous other factors influence the demand for plastic films on several national markets as well. For example, many countries try to contain the demand for disposable carrier bags. Demand for secondary and transport packaging such as shrink and stretch films depends to a large extent on the macroeconomic development and the consumer climate of the respective country. In some regions, efforts to intensify the agriculture lead to an increase in use of agricultural films. The order situation of the construction industry determines the demand for construction films.