US box packaging market to exceed $36bn by 2016 - report

By Joe Whitworth

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Corrugated fiberboard

The demand for US corrugated and paperboard boxes is projected to exceed $36bn (€27bn) in 2016, driven by an economic recovery and expanded food and beverage output, according to a research study.

The market researchers found corrugated and solid fibre boxes will post the fastest gains while beverage and frozen foods are forecast to be the fastest growing sectors.

The US Corrugated & Paperboard Boxes Market​ report looked at the demand for packaging materials including paper, plastic, metal, glass and wood in the food, beverage, dairy, confectionary and bakery industry.

The study presents data from 2001, 2006 and 2011 and material, product and market forecasts through environment and market share factors by 2016 and 2021.

Largest single market

The report said food and beverage accounted for 50% of total market demand for corrugated and paperboard boxes last year, representing the largest single market.

The beverage and frozen food segments are expecting fast gains, with sugar and confectionery, and grain mill product expected to increase more slowly.

The report found continued high oil prices, and paper-based packaging’s positive environmental profile would support its ongoing use, despite sustainability efforts aimed at reducing excess food and beverage packaging.

Challenges to growth

Volume growth of paperboard will be restrained by use of light weight, high-performance containerboard in sustainability and cost but demand will recover from recent year declines as manufacturing output improves.

The study also found above average growth for inks used for box graphics and wax-free alternative coatings which maintain moisture resistance over wax-coated boxes.

Corrugated and solid fibre boxes will post the fastest shipment gains, with growth of folding cartons accelerating from the 2006-2011 period despite the competition from other packaging formats.

Set-up box shipments are forecast to continue their long-term decline due to higher relative costs but overall demand will benefit from use as premium confectionary packaging.

Companies mentioned include Atlas Holdings, Graphic Packaging, International Paper, MeadWestvaco, Rock-Tenn, Sonoco Products and Temple-Inland.

Related topics: Processing & Packaging

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