Globally, the plastic punnets are prominently used packaging solutions for the packaging of the fresh produce, food, and vegetable products. This type of packaging format has gained significant attention in the last few years due to the substantial increase in the demand for lightweight packaging solutions across the globe to reduce overall waste generated due to high consumption of the materials in conventional packaging formats. The plastics punnets are also used for the packaging of some agricultural, food, and dairy products. It provides optimum transit protection and shelf life to the products stored in it. Due to increase in demand for the efficient and cost-friendly packaging solution in the food industry, plastic punnets have become the first choice for most of the food processors for packaging of their products. Also, plastics punnets are substantially replacing the paper-based packaging products in the food packaging market due to its cheaper cost and better characteristics.
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The demand for plastics punnets is expected to increase at a CAGR value of 4%-5% during the next five years. Some of the key players in the plastics punnets market are engaged in the research and development of this product to further reduce cost factor and increase profitability margin.
- In August 2012, Italy-based packaging manufacturer ILIP entered into a joint project with the Department of Fruit Trees and Woody Plant Sciences at the University of Bologna to find out the role played by the packaging product in the preservation of the fresh produce.
- Also, some of the companies such as LC Packaging International BV, are offering plastics punnets made up of the 100% recycled synthetic material. This not only differentiates their product offerings from other players but also creates a better brand image in the market. However, this trend is expected to be followed by other packaging companies too due to increasing rules and regulations over the use of conventional plastic materials, primarily in Europe.
- Recently, Holfeld Plastics, a manufacturer of rigid plastic packaging products, has extended its existing production line by introducing new product portfolio for packaging of soft fruits. The expansion is primarily driven by the increasing customer demand for family-sized and promotional packs along with the need for innovation in the existing product line. The pack is also suitable for top sealing and auto de-nesting which improves the air flow and reduces the condensation when punnets are stacked.
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It has been analyzed that almost half of the packaged fresh-cut fruits available in the market are packaged in the plastics punnets. Moreover, the demand will further increase due to high growth in the packaged fresh-cut fruits market which is estimated to grow at approximately 15% annually. The plastics punnets market is highly fragmented with the strong presence of small manufacturers in the domestic market.
By Material Type
PET and Polypropylene are the most prominent materials used for the production of the plastics punnets globally.
- INFIA Srl, a leading manufacturer of the fruit packaging products, offers wide range of plastic punnets made up of the recycled PET and Polypropylene material. The company is headquartered in Bertinoro, Italy and distributes more than 3 billion trays in South America, North America, Africa, Australia, Asia, and Europe through its strong sales network located globally. The company generated approximately US$ 80 million in sales in 2016.
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Growing concerns over the use of PET material in most of the countries is expected to decline its growth in the next few years. However, few countries have recently established domestic PET recycling plants in order to cope with this problem. For eg. – In Aug. 2017, Flight Group Ltd. started a first PET recycling plant in New Zealand with an investment of US$ 12 million.
- Less than 250 grams
- 250 – 500 grams
- 500 – 1000 grams
- More than 1000 grams
It has been analyzed that the 250 – 500 grams and 500 – 1000 grams segments dominate the plastics punnets market. Most of the fresh-cut fruits and vegetables are packaged in these two capacity segments. Also, most of the prominent companies such as INFIA Srl, offer a large variety of plastics punnets in these packaging capacities.
By Sales Channel
- B2B Sales
- B2C Sales
On the basis of sales channel, the plastics punnets market is segmented as B2B and B2C Sales. Plastics punnets are purchased in bulk by the B2B customers such as food and vegetable processors. Packaging companies also offer a wide range of branding and customization options to these customers. However, B2C sales include some standard shapes and sizes widely available in the market.
By End Use
- Packaged Food
The primary applications for the plastics punnets packaging are fresh produce, fruits, and vegetables. All of these account for more than 50%-60% of the overall plastic punnets market, by end use. Also, the growth in the fresh-cut fruits market has boosted the demand of plastic punnets packaging in the segment. Growing awareness towards more healthier and convenient lifestyle in the developed countries has boosted the demand for packaged food, fruits, and vegetables. Increase in demand for these products will further boost the demand for plastic punnets in these segments.
Some of the indicating factors which may further increase the demand for plastics punnets in near future are:
- According to Food and Agriculture Association, the demand for fruits and vegetables has increased drastically in the high-income countries such as U.S., Germany, Italy, etc.
- It is estimated that the demand for healthy food products will reach nearly US$ 1 trillion in 2017. Also, it has been found in a survey that consumers are ready to pay more for the products which promote weight loss and boost health.
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