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Demand for corrugated packaging ‘set to dip’

Aug 15, 2018 | Carton Packaging, Corrugated Packaging, Market Research, Packaging, Packaging Research and Analysis

Packaging News, 26 July 2018 by Waqas Qureshi

NOA-PRISM, industry experts in corrugated packaging research, predict a short-term dip in demand.  Corrugated and paper-based packaging continues to benefit from the negative press associated with plastic packaging.

NOA-PRISM said the current demand for corrugated – particularly from e-commerce – has been growing year-on-year by as much as 4%, but that won’t be sustained.

Chart showing corrugated production

Neil Osment, managing director at NOA-PRISM, said: “Demand for ecommerce packaging has been growing hugely and has contributed significantly towards high demand levels for brown corrugated papers. But with the focus on light weighting, ‘right sizing’, sustainability and an overall drive for a reduction in packaging, the pressure for reducing paper packaging will lead to an overall slowing in the growth of paper volumes, both by area as well as tonnage.”

The NOA-PRISM research has also shown a shift from SRP (standard format shelf-ready packaging), as consumers fall out of love with out-of-town retailing.  In its place, SFSRP (single facing shelf ready packaging), with the rise of smaller, metro-style supermarkets.

This is also likely to lead to a levelling off of demand for white paper volumes around 2020/21.

“In the long-term, we believe both white and brown or unbleached papers are likely to slow in growth from the heady days of 2017/2018, to more modest growth by around 2020/21.”

And while pressure to switch away from plastic will fuel demand for corrugated, the NOA-PRISM packaging research suggests this impact won’t be felt until the longer term.

“We believe it will take around 10 years for corrugated to penetrate plastic volumes, mainly because expensive machinery that automatically packs product using plastic packaging solutions will only gradually be replaced by brand owners.

“So the slowing in demand for bleached and unbleached papers in four to five years’ time, coupled with the delayed upturn presented by switching from plastic to fibre-based solutions in ten plus years, is likely to lead to a low in the next half decade in the growth for corrugated.”

To read the full article online, please click here to go to Packaging News website.

For your specific packaging research needs, please contact Neil Osment at NOA-PRISM:

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