Packaging materials market has traditionally been a large-scale industry where product marketing was not considered to be of importance.
However, increased globalization in trade coupled with heightened environmental awareness levels have necessitated packaging materials providers to offer information regarding product characteristics, including raw materials used, manufacturing process and performance of the product in service. Besides, advancements in processing technologies have driven specialization within the industry, resulting in an ability to produce specialty products that effectively meet customer requirements. Despite making inroads into several niche applications, paper-packaging materials are increasingly replaced by plastic films and composites with enhanced properties, in traditional applications. This has been one of the major reasons behind the declining growth in the market even before the recent recession surfaced. Nevertheless, technological advancements widening packaging applications of paper would ensure a sustained growth for the market over the near term. Carry-out and prepared foods, beverage cartons and shipping sacks represent high growth potential areas for paper packaging, while the industry is likely to lose its share in milk cartons, retail bags/cartons and egg cartons. Containerboard market worldwide has witnessed significant changes regarding grade structures and product specifications, with share of waste-based grades increasing at a rapid rate.
North America, which dominated the containerboard market up until 2007, stepped aside, making way for Asia-Pacific. The Asia-Pacific region led by China currently dominates the containerboard market worldwide. Manufacturers from developed countries although cushioned by advanced technologies and easy availability of raw materials, are likely to face stiff competition from Asian manufacturers, with price being the major competitive factor. Paperboard and corrugated boxes demand is expected to increase considerably over the coming years. A positive trend in this market would be an increase in non-durable products shipments, as they account for over 3/4th of demand for boxes. Growth in the market for durable goods, which utilize costly and large boxes, is identified as an important trigger factor. Other growth drivers include the beverage and food market, gaining traction post recession, which is also one of the biggest end-use markets for boxes. Increase in prepared and processed foods is also likely to stimulate the market, as they require attractive packaging to push sales. Premium box sectors such as the printed ones are gaining popularity and are likely to drive future demand for boxes.
The larger packaging industry worldwide buckled under intense impact of the economic crisis during the recessionary years 2008 and 2009. The overall packaging sales in the US and Europe witnessed all-time lows for 2008 due to the effect of the crisis on major end-use industries. The negative impact cascaded down to the paper packaging materials segment as well, and during the period, growth pace witnessed a considerable slowdown. The pitfalls of economic recession loomed larger in the developed markets of Northern America and Western Europe, in comparison to the fast emerging Asian, Latin American and Eastern European countries. Paper and paperboard production in the key markets of North America and Western European markets fell steeply, leading to decrease in demand for wood pulp and ultimately pulp production during 2009 and 2010. Ecological concerns associated with the industry supply chain could emerge as major hindrances for the industry’s growth in future. Nevertheless, premium value placed on packaging materials throughout the FMCG markets, and rising spending propensity of the middle-income groups in the developing markets offered robust growth opportunities which contributed largely towards the market’s revival post 2009.
Asia-Pacific and US constitute two of the largest markets for paper packaging materials, as stated by the new research report on Paper Packaging Materials. Asia-Pacific, powered by rapid growth and massive capacity expansions in China is also projected to register the overall fastest growth rate through 2015. The Containerboard product segment dominates the paper packaging materials market amassing a lion’s share, literally dominated by the Big Three, Asia-Pacific, US and Europe on a global scale. In terms of rapid growth, the packaging materials market is expected to be driven by packaging & wrapping papers and other paperboard segment, inclusive of various grades of paperboard used for specific packaging applications.
Key participants profiled in the report include DS Smith PLC, Georgia-Pacific Corporation, Graphic Packaging International, Holmen AB, International Paper Company, MeadWestvaco Corp., M-Real Oyj, Mayr-Melnhof Group, Oji Paper Co., Ltd, Smurfit Kappa Group Plc, Smurfit-Stone Container Corp., Stora Enso Oyj, Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget, UPM-Kymmene Corporation, and Weyerhaeuser Company.
The research report titled “Paper Packaging Materials: A Global Strategic Business Report” announced by Global Industry Analysts, Inc., provides a comprehensive overview of the market, latest recession and other trends, product overview, review of the paper and packaging market, product innovations, recent industry activity and profiles of market players worldwide. Analysis and overview is provided for major geographic markets such as United States, Canada, Japan, Europe (France, Germany, Italy, UK, Spain, Russia and Rest of Europe), Asia-Pacific (China and Rest of Asia-Pacific), Latin America and Rest of World. Market analytics are provided in volume (tons) terms for product segments including Containerboard, Cartonboard, Packaging & Wrapping Paper and Other Paperboard.