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Packaging & design

Packaging: Recycling and digital are becoming central issues for buyers

In a promising business context driven by the return to growth of European economies, the packaging sector is anticipating new regulatory requirements on recyclability and is seeking to make its digital revolution a reality, found the latest release of the All4Pack Observatory.

Investment perspectives of the entire packaging industry are stimulated by growth in packaging user sectors, with recycling and recyclability of materials driving innovation in the coming two years - Photo: © Everything Possible /

Investment perspectives of the entire packaging industry are stimulated by growth in packaging user sectors, with recycling and recyclability of materials driving innovation in the coming two years - Photo: © Everything Possible /

The latest findings of the 2017 Observatory [1] conducted by the All4Pack Paris trade show [2] announce promising growth prospects for the packaging sector in 2018.

Return to growth

Investment perspectives of the entire packaging industry are stimulated by growth in packaging user sectors.

  • The return to economic growth continues to fuel the packaging sector. 63% of buyers and 62% of suppliers forecast an increase in their output by volume in France. Distribution/retail/online holds onto its top position as the most optimistic user sector. The capital, intermediate and construction goods sector has turned optimistic once again for 58% of buyers. One out of two buyers has invested or plans to invest in the creation or manufacturing of packaging solutions.
  • Processing and handling are driving investment. Out of the 91% of buyers with investments either ongoing or planned within the next two years, one out of three will be investing in processing/packing machines and one out of three in storage or load handling systems.
  • The “Made in France” label is a guarantee for purchases, in spite of noticeable pressure on materials prices. 46% of buyers source their packaging in France. 78% believe that the “Made in France” label is a key to development in packaging, but 41% expect to see materials prices rise.

Strong sustainability issues

According to the All4Pack Observatory, the circular economy is becoming a key issue for the packaging industry, which anticipates new legal requirements.

  • Recycling and recyclability of materials will drive innovation in the coming two years according to 52% of buyers. A long way ahead of design.
  • Cost reductions and recycling round out the virtuous circle of packaging. Cost control is historically the most important factor driving change, and this is still the case according to 51% of buyers; however it is nonetheless becoming less predominant on the priority list. Recyclability and recycling of packaging is the second most important factor driving change, and reduction at source and eco-design moves back up to fourth position.

Digital transformation

The Observatory also points out powerful signals around distribution modes, the digital transformation and industry 4.0:

  • E-packaging has found its place on the market. Four buyers out of seven say that primary packaging should generally adapt to omnichannel distribution, while two out of seven think that it should be specifically adapted to the online sales channel. Development in shipping packaging is focussed most on boxes tailored to the size of parcels, envelopes, and air cushion and recycled paper gap filling, but in one case in two, it is a standard-size box.
  • Connected/smart packaging to cater to Millennials. Or so think 79% of buyers. 29% of buyers consider it necessary to differentiate packaging aimed at millennials from that aimed at baby boomers. 71% think that format and size are differentiation criteria for baby boomers. 
    15 February 2018 
  • Packing and packaging have now entered the era of industry 4.0 for 71% of buyers and suppliers. Buyers expect industry 4.0 to deliver better quality at lower cost, even more flexibility for equipment, and productivity gains. The key benefit according to suppliers is the reduction in time to market. 36% of buyers have already started investing to adopt the technology of industry 4.0, while others are waiting to assess its return on investment. 

Source: ALL4PACK Paris 2017 Observatory – survey conducted on behalf of ALL4PACK Paris/Groupe Comexposium by Goudlink x MRCC, with analysis by Annette Freidinger-Legay, International packaging expert.


[1] The report is based on a survey administered online in September and October 2017. Out of 467 responses: 72% came from buyers (packaging user firms based in France), 28% came from suppliers (packaging manufacturers, original equipment manufacturers, manufacturers and distributors of packaging, handling and logistics machinery and equipment, based in France). The data were completed by the All4Pack Paris 2018 Pack Experts Committee (Groupe Carrefour, Citéo, Charal, Coca-Cola, Laboratoires Expanscience, L’Oréal, Mars Petcare, Philips,

[2] The All4Pack trade show will take place on 26-29 November 2018 at the Paris Nord Villepinte exhibitions centre.

© 2018 - Premium Beauty News -
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