Market outlook: Growth in flexible plastic packaging remains strong
Flexible packaging is living up to its name and being increasingly used by companies looking to enhance product protection, extend shelf life and create a greener, more circular economy.
If you look around your home, you’ll probably see dozens of examples of flexible packaging; from tomato paste to toothpaste, or from rice pouches to salad bags, flexible packaging is all around us and is living up to its name.
Flexible packaging is basically non-rigid packaging – its structure is designed to have movement and versatility, helping to efficiently pack and protect all kinds of products. Flexible packaging comes in a variety of forms; tubes, pouches, bags, cartons, sachets and so on.
As well as a variety of forms, flexible packaging comes is a wide range of materials, so it is being increasingly used by companies that need to enhance the protection of products whilst in transit and extend shelf life. And in addition to product protection, brands can enhance their marketing and printing quality with vibrant colours, bold letter printing and intricate designs.
Due to the sheer breadth of applications for flexible packaging, the market outlook is strong. In fact, the global flexible packaging market is expected to grow at a rate of 3 percent from 2018-2024.
Flexible Packaging Benefits
For manufacturers and shippers, the shift toward flexible packaging has many potential benefits. It requires fewer raw materials than rigid packaging products such as plastic bottles and corrugated boxes, so it is often less expensive to produce. Also, since it’s lighter in weight and thinner than standard packaging, it usually takes up less room in lorries and containers, thus reducing freight costs and warehouse space.
Better protection for less time and money
Flexible packaging lends itself to automated solutions that can greatly increase throughput and profitability for manufacturers and shippers. Pregis offers a full suite of options, including Sharp Packaging automated poly-bagging machines, AirSpeed inflatable void-fill systems and cushioning solutions.
Sharp Packaging poly bagging machines seal items at rates that manual packing simply can’t match. AirSpeed inflatable void-fill systems can quickly produce perfectly sized plastic air pillows to prevent products from moving within the box, and the AirSpeed inflatable cushioning system quickly inflates hybrid cushioning film to create bubble cushioning to envelop products and protect against impact, vibration and compression.
Pregis’ flexible packaging materials come in a wide variety of colours and unique designs - many can be customized to feature a company’s logo, colour scheme and marketing messaging.
Enhanced sustainability credentials
Environmentally conscious consumers are demanding a cultural and economic shift toReduce, Re-use, and Recycle, working toward a circular economy.
Lightweight, versatile and durable plastics can help save key resources such as energy and water in strategic sectors that include packaging. But until recently, many of these materials ended up in landfills because they typically aren’t accepted in all recycling programs, making it more difficult to sort rigid materials at recycling centres.
The UK Government recently announced that it intends to overhaul the waste system, cut plastic pollution and move towards a more circular economy. It is envisaged that packaging producers are set to pay the full cost of dealing with their packaging waste and pay world-leading tax on plastic packaging that does not meet a minimum threshold of at least 30% recycled content. The analysis carried out shows that the UK economy of changes will run into millions of pounds.
Help put an end to plastic waste
As a sustainable, lower-cost, high-throughput packaging option, restorative, regenerative flexible plastic materials have gained strength in their widespread usage and applicability. They’re also helping Pregis fulfill the zero-waste promise of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste.
“Our vision at Pregis not only underscores a commitment to protective packaging, but also to a higher purpose which is rooted in sustainability and supporting communities across the globe,” says Kevin Baudhuin, president and CEO of Pregis.
Empowering consumers with the tools to protect against waste – in any form – and educating people about how to responsibly recycle plastics, is a small, yet meaningful step forward in the journey to end plastic waste. “Joining the Alliance to End Plastic Waste provides us with a unique opportunity to collaborate with passionate, like-minded thought leaders eager to create positive change for the planet. This platform will allow us to be an integral part of solving a complex challenge.”
UK Government Link