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FLEXO Magazine : January 2013
Flexible Packaging FPA estimates the U.S . packaging market at close to $150 billion annually and places flexible packaging’s portion at 18 percent—$27 billion or better. As an en- terprise, flexible package printing/converting employs 79,000 people who work in single plants or multi-venue (40+ site) conglomerates. Personnel rosters per plant approximate 200. Retail and institutional food is the largest market, accounting for nearly 60 percent of busi- ness. Other markets for flexible packaging include retail non-food at 11 percent; industrial applications at 11 percent; consumer products at 10 percent; and medical and pharmaceutical at 8 percent. PCI Films Consulting Ltd. maintains that, total world demand for converter-supplied flexible packaging is valued at $71 billion today, having increased by $15 billion since 2006, 5 percent yearly. North America accounts for 25 percent of world flexible packaging production and demand. In the next four years, investment in converting capacity in many markets will expand the size of the flex- ible packaging converting industry by 20 percent. In 2017, the Central and East Asian and North American regions will be accountable for around half of the world’s demand. Smithers Pira forecasts today ’s global consumer flex- ible packaging market value at approximately $60 billion. It will grow at 4.1 percent to reach $71.3 billion by 2016. Tonnage is 18.1 million and is forecast to reach 22.5 million by 2016. Asia is the largest regional market, responsible for about 30 percent of global market volume, followed by Western Europe and North America. Food accounts for al- most three-quarters of consumption. Meat, fish and poultry is the largest food sector for flexible forecasts packaging, followed by confectionery and baked goods. Adam Page, head of reports and consultancy at Smithers Pira: “Brand owners value flexible packaging for its versatility, comparative low cost and potential for innovation. It is also a lighter-weight pack format, a key attribute given the growing importance being attached to carbon footprint analysis and the environmental impact of packaging.” Folding Cartons Leading market watchers see folding carton converting as a burgeoning business enterprise in the United States. Proponents of that description include, Paperboard Packaging Council, as well as major packaging market research analysts The Freedonia Group and RISI. Analysts agree that the most attractive benefits of folding carton produc- tion are the obvious, namely: low cost, functionality and the ability to provide considerable billboard space for eye-catching graphics. This business sector employs 40,000 . It con- sists of 500 or so plants that produce 5.2 million tons of paperboard packaging on an annual basis. • Food and beverage packaging requirements are responsible for the greatest market share, repre- senting 50 percent of box demand in the U.S. • Growth rates for the coming two years (2013-2014) predict annual sales boosts of 4.7 percent and tonnage or production output improvements of just under 1 percent. • Value per ton of output is also on the rise RISI pinpoints it at 4.1 percent. • Stable earnings are expected to accompany the steady growth. PPC places current sales at $8.8 billion Freedonia forecasts that increases in demand will result in sales hitting $9.8 billion by 2016 PPC says: Fifty-six percent of all paperboard packag- ing is destined for such food product segments as bev- erages and dairy products, candy and confections, dry foods including cereals, and frozen foods. The balance services these vital industries: pharmaceuticals, cosmet- ics and personal care products, soaps and household maintenance products, toys, sporting goods and most of the items found in grocery or club stores. Freedonia cites expanding food, beverage and durable goods output as a significant contributor to growth. Gains will be helped by a trend toward more expensive boxes, such as folding cartons that offer high- quality graphics and printing. Other value-added box types, such as those that are retail- or shelf-ready, are also expected to gain ground Emerald Packaging, Union City, CA www.flexography.org jAnUAry 2013 FLEXO 11