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As demand increases, biodegradable plastic packaging market forecast to show strong growth

By Andrew McDougall , 15-Nov-2011
Last updated on 15-Nov-2011 at 18:07 GMT

The biodegradable plastic packaging market is expected to reach $1.85bn by the end of the year driven by increased consumer concerns for the environment and diminishing fossil reserves.

The recession impacted demand for all types of packaging according to market analyst Visiongain, which expects the global packaging market and in particular, the biodegradable plastic packaging market, which was not as hard hit, to demonstrate solid growth.

“Environmental issues and diminishing fossil reserves have raised concerns, [which will result] in steady growth for biodegradable plastic packaging,” Visiongain’s ‘Biodegradable Plastic Packaging Market 2011-2021’ report said.

Use of biodegradable plastic in cosmetic packaging is increasing as more companies up their sustainability efforts and turn to injection-molded cases or packs for creams, gels and make-up.

Visiongain forecasts the biodegradable plastic packaging industry should exhibit solid growth, driven by escalating demand for environmentally friendly, sustainable packaging of goods; healthier lifestyles worldwide; and rapidly developing emerging markets with growing consumer demand for biodegradable plastic packaging across all submarkets.

Contributing growth factors

The emerging economies, which in total maintained positive growth during the crisis, will continue to register strong growth, according to the UK-based firm, driving demand for sustainable, eco-friendly biodegradable plastic packaging products in the coming decade.

Another factor highlighted as one of the main drivers likely to boost the market is the trend towards ‘green packaging’. Different countries specify targets for waste reduction and carbon footprint emission, whilst consumer demand is also playing a big role.

Visiongain claims the biodegradable plastic packaging market was almost immune to the recent economic downturn as consumers' increasing concerns about personal, as well as environmental, health and wellness continues to drive the need for biodegradable packaging innovations.

It also believes that technological advancements related to lightweight packaging will further boost the demand in the industry.

Key players keen on green

“Furthermore, key industry players and manufacturers are opting for better materials made from renewable sources for packaging purposes thus keeping them out of the landfills.”

Sustainability is one the biggest talking points when it comes to cosmetics packaging at present and many finished goods manufacturers are assessing their options in this area.

Perhaps one of the most noteworthy initiatives in the cosmetics field was the announcement in March of this year that L’Oreal USA wants to make bioplastics a key part of its drive for greater sustainability.

Leading Japanese player Shiseido also adopted a sustainable packaging stance using bioplastics in a shampoo bottle for its Urara hair care range, as part of its efforts to reduce its carbon footprint.

P&G also announced last year that it has selected its leading cosmetic and personal care brands Pantene Pro-V, Cover Girl and Max Factor to debut its sugarcane-derived plastic made from a renewable resource.

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