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Demand for More Lightweight and Convenient Packaging Drives Growth for UK Packaging Market

21 August 2013

The UK packaging industry will see moderate growth with a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 2.01% to 2017, according to new report from Canadean. Consumer trends will also drive the use of more lightweight Flexible and Rigid Plastic packaging with innovative pack shapes, closures and dispensers.

Evolving consumer lifestyles seek out increased convenience

For British consumers, finding packaging that provides greater convenience has become increasingly important. The packaging industry has responded to this demand by offering handheld pack formats that facilitate on-the-go consumption. Pack formats that enable easy preparation at home or at work, such as through re-sealable packaging, single-serve portions or in-pack cooking, are also popular.

British consumers drive demand for lighter and more flexible packaging

Demand for packaging that offers increased convenience will help Flexible Packaging and Rigid Plastic Packaging increase their share of the UK market, due to the materials’ ability to mould to new shapes and formats, lower costs, and lightweight nature. Flexible Packaging will see one of the strongest growth rates to 2017, with a CAGR of 3.09%, led by its use in the Food sector. Rigid Plastic Packs is also expected to see positive growth with a CAGR of 2.10%. In addition to its traditional use in the Food and Health & Beauty sectors, it will be increasingly utilised by the Alcoholic Drinks and Home Improvement sectors.

Lightweighting improves both bottom lines and environmental impact

Lightweighting, achieved through the reduction of the amount of raw materials used, produces lighter packaging which lowers transportation costs and supports improved sustainability and company profitability targets. In this respect, Plastics is increasingly popular, as its lightweighting enables lower unit prices to be maintained in the face of rising raw material costs. For instance, in 2011 Carlsberg introduced a 500ml PET bottle to the UK Beer Market as a substitute for the heavier glass bottle. Whilst use of Rigid Plastics for Beer products will remain low, innovations such as Carlsberg’s PET bottle highlight how lighter weight materials will be used to innovate in new product categories.

These findings are based on information from Canadean’s report: “Latest Trends and Key Issues in the UK Retail Packaging Market”, published in July 2013.

For further information

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