Trade Resources Industry Views Last Year Was an Important 12 Months for The Dairy Packaging Industry

Last Year Was an Important 12 Months for The Dairy Packaging Industry

Tags: Dairy, Packaging, food

Last year was an important 12 months for the dairy packaging industry.

The sector continued to develop with pace, and landmarks were achieved in areas such as design and materials.

Looking ahead, the saying usually goes, out with the old and in with the new.

However, in 2014, it won’t necessarily be new trends that take off; instead existing trends will strengthen, consolidate and shape the sector further.

Looking at the coming year, three key developments will be ‘ones to watch’ within the liquid dairy arena.

Firstly, we will see an increase in extended shelf life functional and healthy products.

Secondly, single serve packaging will take off even further as demand for convenience products heightens.

And, finally, as in 2013, lightweighting will continue to be a central issue, with the dairy industry leading the way in this field.

Effective processing and packaging methods can extend the shelf life of products from weeks to months.

The growth in the sector stems from consumer demand for flavoured and functional dairy based beverages.

A combination of ESL, aseptic processing, filling and packaging result in maintaining the integrity and flavour of the product, whilst extending its shelf life in chill chain and ambient conditions.

Smaller portion, single-serve packaging will also boom in 2014.

Convenience is key and this will be fulfilled through a growth in bottle sizes of up to 500ml.

Consumer demand for snack-size bottles, which fit into a lunch box for example, has been steadily increasing as people lead faster paced lives and become more conscious of minimising food waste.

This trend goes hand in hand with the demand for longer life, functional protein based products.

People are now looking for healthy alternatives to carbonated drinks, and dairy based functional drinks to improve general health and re-hydrate after exercise have never been more popular.

Lastly, lightweighting will continue to be a prominent trend in the dairy packaging industry in 2014.

This will expand regardless of the industry but, in the dairy sector, which is often seen as driving this agenda forward, it will be particularly important.

Nampak achieved a world first in 2013, creating the world’s lightest plastic milk bottle, and as industry targets continue to push the schedule forward, new milestones will be reached in 2014 and it will continue as an important theme.

These three core developments will add significant value to the packaging industry in 2014. Increasing consumer demand for functional products, and also packaging with a reduced carbon footprint, will push manufacturers to innovate and compete in new ways, and the sector will evolve further.

Innovative lightweight dairy packaging will also offer opportunities to meet demand in emerging markets and in other sectors.

It’s clear that packaging that incorporates these elements will peak in 2014.

Although the wheel isn’t being completely re-invented, and these trends aren’t groundbreaking, these will definitely have the biggest impact in terms of shaping the dairy industry in 2014.

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