The global liquid packaging market size was valued at USD 339,527.2 million in 2020 and reached USD 463,202.8 million by 2027, at a CAGR of 4.5% from 2021 to 2027. Liquid packaging is used for protecting and increasing the shelf life of liquid and semi-liquid products. It seals the contents from pollution, physical damage, and sunlight, thereby making transportation and storage easier. Liquid packaging is designed in two basic forms, which include rigid and flexible. Rigid packaging is an old concept that includes various types of bottles and containers. Rigid liquid packaging is the most widely used packaging type of liquid packaging. It includes paperboard, glass, cans, cartons, PET bottles, and plastics. They are widely used to pack liquid products such as carbonated drinks, water, alcohol, dairy products, beverages, etc. Flexible packaging includes various types of cartons, stand-up pouches, packaging films, sachets, and bag-in-box.
The global market of liquid packaging is currently driven by the food & beverages and FMCG industries. These two markets have witnessed significant high growth due to the global e-commerce boom and smartphone penetration, mainly in Germany, India, China, and the U.S. To cater to this e-commerce surge, major liquid packaging players have set up design labs to smoothen collaboration with food & beverage and food delivery chains. Hence, due to its extensive applications in the personal care, food & beverage, and pharmaceutical industries, expanding either of these industry verticals impacts the global liquid packaging market growth. Additionally, an increase in population increases the demand for beverage products. As a result, beverage companies have to step up their production, while retailers must keep products for longer periods. Liquid packaging such as packaging film increases the shelf life of food products such as milk and juice.
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Though, government policies regarding the disposal and recyclability of plastics are a major threat to the global liquid packaging market. Additionally, stringent government quality standards for plastics in the food & beverage industry are expected to restrain the market’s growth. On the contrary, a rise in focus toward developing 100% recyclable liquid packaging solutions, thereby increasing the sustainability of liquid packaging, will prove beneficial for the growth of the liquid packaging market during the forecast period. Nanoparticles in food packaging applications will be a breakthrough in liquid packaging technology. Currently, the wide-scale adoption of NPs is being prevented by limited data on their toxicological effects.
COVID–19 Impact on the Global Liquid Packaging
Lockdown measures have hampered the tourism industry, affecting the food & beverage industry and the hotel industry. However, the pandemic has increased local demand for food & beverages. As food & beverages have been tagged as essential during this crisis, people are stocking essential foods & beverages to avoid shortage. This has led to increased demand for liquid packaging. There has been a significant increase in the sales of sauces, dressings, and food condiments segments. To control the spread of COVID-19 causing virus, the demand for hand washes, liquid detergents, and sanitizer has skyrocketed post-March 2019. In fact, according to the press released by Berry Global, the need for hand sanitizers has quadrupled and witnessed an increase in the overall growth of 16x from December 2019 to March 2020. This has increased the demand for sanitizer bottles, containers, and stand-up pouches. Also, it increased the demand for top handle and side handle containers for chemical storage, such as Sodium Hypochlorite, the main disinfectant. Therefore, the liquid packaging market got impacted in both positive and negative ways.
Global Liquid Packaging Market Dynamics
Drivers: Increase in demand for lightweight as well as sustainable packaging
The adoption of lightweight packaging has increased among manufacturers and co-packers. Lightweight packaging enables lighter, more productive renditions of a specific package, wherein the final product is a better variation of the original product. The preference for economical packaging has increased due to the need to reduce the cost of the final product. Food firms and packaging partners are witnessing constant pressure from end-use industries to reduce packaging weights and gauges. Reducing packaging mass remains a major trend, especially in consumer-driven food packaging markets. Consumers need sustainable packaging, which is met by using renewable resources that can be recycled. According to a study by EcoFocus on behalf of Evergreen Packaging, packaging made of renewable materials is extremely influential to 72% of shoppers’ purchase decisions; moreover, half of the shoppers usually look for beverages packaged using renewable materials. For the same reason, post-consumer resin (PCR)-based liquid packaging has gained momentum in recent years.
Restraints: Government regulations regarding plastic packaging products
Food packaging products and materials usually contain additives, such as colorants and chemicals. Prolonged contact between food and packaging materials may lead to these additives’ transfer from the packaging to a food product. Hence, various governments have placed stringent regulations regarding plastics for food packaging applications. In the EU, requirements applicable to food packaging materials are detailed in Framework Regulation (EC) No. 1935/2004, which establishes minimum requirements applicable to most types of food packaging. Under Regulation 1935/2004, packaging materials must be authorized by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) before being placed in the market. In the U.S., regulations affecting food packaging products and materials are overseen by the U.S. FDA regulatory requirements, affecting each substance used in a given material.
Opportunities: Development of nano–food packaging
Several nanoparticles can provide active properties to food packaging materials, such as oxygen scavenging ability, enzyme immobilization, and antimicrobial properties. Nanoclay-polymer nanomaterials have been developed for extrusion-coating applications for fruit juices and dairy products or co-extrusion processes for manufacturing bottles for beer and carbonated drinks. Nanoclays incorporated into plastic bottles stiffen packaging and reduce gas permeability, keeping oxygen-sensitive foods fresher and extending shelf life. However, many safety concerns about nanomaterials limit their adoption in food packaging solutions. There is limited data about the migration of most nanoparticles (NPS) from the packaging material into food and their eventual toxicological effects.
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Scope of the Report
The study categorizes the liquid packaging market based on materials, packaging format, technology, and end-users at the regional and global levels.
By Materials Outlook (Sales/Revenue, USD Million, 2017–2027)
- Polyethylene Terephthalate
By Packaging Format Outlook (Sales/Revenue, USD Million, 2017–2027)
- Stand-up Pouches
- Bottles, Jars, Cans & Tubes (largest)
By Technology Outlook (Sales/Revenue, USD Million, 2017–2027)
- Aseptic Liquid Packaging
- Blow Molding
- Form Fill Seal
By End–Users Outlook (Sales/Revenue, USD Million, 2017–2027)
- Food & Beverage
- Personal Care
- Household Care
By Region Outlook (Sales, USD Million, 2017–2027)
- North America (US, Canada, Mexico)
- South America (Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Peru, Rest of Latin America)
- Europe (Germany, Italy, France, UK, Spain, Poland, Russia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Rest of Europe)
- Asia Pacific (China, Japan, India, South Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia, the Philippines, Singapore, Australia & New Zealand, Rest of Asia Pacific)
- The Middle East & Africa (Saudi Arabia, UAE, South Africa, Northern Africa, Rest of MEA)
The plastic segment is projected to account for the largest market share by material type
The global liquid packaging market based on material type is segmented into paperboard, plastic, glass, metal, and others. In 2020, the plastic segment accounted for the largest market share of 37.4% in the global liquid packaging market. The plastic packaging segment is expected to witness steady growth. This is driven by great demand from end-user segments such as food and beverage, pharmaceutical, and personal care. Organized retail sectors and e-commerce industries offer huge potential for plastic packaging in developed and emerging nations; thus, creating new market opportunities. Additionally, an increase in disposable income and shifting trend towards sustainable packaging will further drive the market growth. As consumers are showing more interest in spending money in various food and beverage store, restaurants, and retail shops, it will further enhance the demand for polyethylene and polypropylene for flexible packagings, such as pouch and film.
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North America accounts for the highest CAGR during the forecast period.
Based on the regions, the global liquid packaging market has been segmented across North America, Asia-Pacific, Europe, South America, and the Middle East & Africa. Globally, North America is estimated to hold the highest CAGR of 5.4% in the global liquid packaging market during the forecast period. North America consists of the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. The presence of major online and brick & mortar retailers has positioned North America as a major consumer of liquid packaging. Moreover, major raw material producers of liquid packaging are located in the U.S. and Canada.
High adoption of technology, the presence of established fast-food culture, and the rise in over-the-counter (OTC) medications drive the growth of the liquid packaging market in the U.S. In addition, the U.S. is a major consumer of functional drinks such as sports drinks and non-alcoholic energy drinks. An increase in demand for different-sized packs is a key contributor to liquid packaging market growth. Leading beverage brands in the U.S. include PepsiCo, Nestle, Unilever Group, L’Oréal, and Procter & Gamble Co. Unilever Groups’ portfolio includes liquid products for personal care, food condiments, and home care products. Unilever’s revenue in 2019 from the Americas was 16,482 million euros. The millennial population in the U.S. offers great opportunities for the wine industry during the forecast period.
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Key Market Players
The global liquid packaging market profiles the leading players in the liquid packaging market; they include Berry Global, Amcor Limited, Constantia Flexibles, Goglio S.p.A., Gerresheimer AG, MONDI Plc, Reynolds Group Holdings Ltd., ProAmpac, Sealed Air Corporation, SIG Combibloc Group Ltd., Smurfit Kappa, Tetra Laval, and Sonoco Products Company