Demand for Corrugated Packaging Material to reach $176 billion by 2019

Demand for corrugated packaging is expected to increase by an average of more than 4% annually over the next five years.

The global corrugated market was worth over $140 billion in 2013, amounting to almost 90 million tonnes of finished product according to a new market report from Smithers Pira. Demand for corrugated packaging is expected to increase by an average of more than 4% annually over the next five years, and will amount to almost 115 million tonnes of converted material worth by 2019.

The Future of Corrugated Board Packaging to 2019 gives an overview of the state of the corrugated board industry in 2013, alongside global market forecasts to 2019, including key definitions and details of specific geographic markets.

According to the report, the largest producing country of corrugated board is China, which amounted for more than 27% of the total container board market volume produced in 2013. China also leads the world in corrugated conversion, making up over 28% of the global converted output in 2013.

Almost 30% of the projected volume in 2019 will be used in the packaging of processed foods, with fresh produce adding a further 10% to the total. The packaging of electrical goods, which includes mobile devices, is expected to show the most attractive growth prospects. This sector will increase its volume consumption of corrugated materials on average by 5.6% annually to 2019, representing almost 7% of the total market volume by this time. By 2019, food packaging will consume almost 47% of the total volume of board, with processed foods accounting for 30% of the total. Electrical goods will be the single largest non-food packaging application, followed by paper products and personal and household care items.

What is driving and influencing this growing demand for corrugated packaging materials? According to The Future of Corrugated Board Packaging to 2018, significant investments are being undertaken by producers in environmental protection and energy optimisation programmes, as well as other activities aimed at reducing water consumption and improving logistics and transportation. These initiatives and programmes are having the desired effect, as the corrugated industry has achieved its carbon footprint by a further 4.8% between 2009 and 2011, following a reduction of nearly 12% between 2006 and 2008.

In addition, the growth in the use of the internet for shopping, stimulated by the growing use of smartphones as well as the increasing proportion of tech-savvy consumers, has a very positive effect on corrugated demand. In traditional in-store retailing, one corrugated case would be used to transport several items to the retailer for sale, whereas now, each individual item has its own corrugated secondary pack for distribution direct to the customer.

Retail-ready packaging is increasing, driven by the influence of supermarkets over the retail landscape and supported by their growing share of the retail market, as they attempt to improve in-store and distribution efficiencies.

As well as these industry trends, the global economy seems to be on the brink of a long-awaited upturn after some years of stagnation and decline, presenting yet more opportunities for growth in demand for corrugated packaging materials.

The Future of Corrugated Packaging is available now for £3,555 until the 28th of March. To find out more about the report and how your company can benefit from a global usage licence, please contact: Heather Adams (US) T: +1 207 781 9632 or Bill Allen (UK) T: +44 (0)1372 802086.