Produce packaging grows with health trends

By Sean Roach

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Packaging Box Corrugated fiberboard

The demand for produce packaging is expected to surpass $4.3bn by
2010 fuelled by shifting consumer trends and hikes in material
costs, says a new report.

An expected 4.6 per cent growth in the packaging market is largely being fueled by consumer demands for health and convenience. However, the rate of growth from 2005 to 2010 will be slightly less than the previous five-year period, said the Freedonia Group.

The report also takes into affect national demographics and it's potential affect on the packaging industry. A large aging population and the growth of small households may increase the demand for fresh produce, which will spur on demand for convenient, value-added packaging.

Innovative and traditional packaging for salads has been the fastest growing sector, said Freedonia.

In 2005 salad packaging accounted for 13 per cent of all produce packaging. Continued growth will be based on the popularity of entree salads in restaurants and bagged salads in retail stores.

Packaging for these products are very diverse in range from bulk packaging to single-serving salads and bagged salad kits. The biggest growth has been with these convenient products, as they tend to cost more than conventional packaging and therefore spur packaging gains.

The largest growth will remain with corrugated box packaging, which should gain $200m in value by 2010.

The rate of growth will be slightly lower than the average. However the growing cost for specialized corrugated packaging such as modular boxes, white-top linerboard boxes and moisture-resistant boxes, will drive financial returns for the sector.

A relatively new addition to the packaging market is the reusable plastic container. The demand for this product, fueled by large produce retailers, grew nearly 60 per cent from 2000 to 2005.

However, these containers only account for a small amount of total produce packaging and Freedonia believes the market is slowing. They predict a 7.6 per cent increase to $75m by 2010.

Fresh-cut and ready-to-eat produce has led to above-average prospects for plastic containers, bags and liners. Applications for the plastic clamshell type container will expand into this fresh convenient market, contributing to 8 per cent growth by 2010.

The findings were released earlier this month in the Produce Packaging report. Research was conducted by the Freedonia Group, a Cleveland-based industry market research firm.

Related topics Processing & Packaging

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