Future packaging trends

Sustainability concerns, ranked behind cost and food safety/security as today’s driving trends, will dominate packaging industry work in the next 10 years in both Europe and North America.

  • Cost, today’s top driver, will decline in importance in the next 10 years.
  • Today’s emphasis on “right-sizing” will give way to strategies of using renewable materials, recyclable materials and smart packaging in the next 10 years – a clear call for innovation and collaboration throughout the value chain.
  • The packaging industry believes consumers will place increasing value on recyclability and the perceived “greenness” of packaging in the next 10 years – at the same time, demand for proof of sustainability claims will grow exponentially, for instance in the demand for life cycle analysis data.
  • Right-sizing packaging in terms of efficient package shape/size, down-gauging of package material and minimising package failures dominate both the North American and European packaging landscape today. Materials play a critical role in these objectives.
  • Respondents say cost is the top factor driving the industry today (59%) but predict that it will decline significantly in importance in the next 10 years (dropping 28%) to be less important than factors like sustainability (51%) and food safety/security (37%)
  • Regulations will influence packaging design more 10 years from now.
  • The source of raw materials will become increasingly important (from 20% today to 40% in 10 years) to tie in with cost as the third most important criteria in the next 10 years.
  • Lifecycle analysis (52%) and the recyclability of the package (46%) will be the two most important criteria overall in the next 10 years.
  • The packaging industry today clearly thinks that consumers value convenience (76%) and shelf appeal (58%).
  • In the next 10 years, respondents think this dynamic will completely change, with consumers valuing sustainability features, the specifically perceived “greenness” of the materials (increasing 23%), recyclability (increasing 27%) and reusability (increasing 13% ).

Source “2012 Survey of Future Packaging Trends”-Study of Packaging World Magazine, DuPont etc

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