On the continent that made the cork closure famous (think wine bottle), plastic beverage caps and closures account for 40% of the European closure industry revenue, but nearly 60% of the market by number of units. While carbonated soft drinks (CSDs) are no longer a growing category, the sheer size of this market will result in significant additional demand by 2015.
Of course this means that non-beverage plastic closure applications account for 60% of total industry revenue, and demand in Europe for this market segment is also increasing. In its last report on the European plastics industry (“Plastic Caps and Closures in Europe”), a leading consulting firm points that the toiletries and cosmetics sectors are the largest consumers of polymer caps and closures. The report predicted personal care closures and customized product delivery solutions will be the chief drivers to overall closure industry growth over the next five years, followed by closures for the home healthcare sector.
The key market driver for closures in non-beverage applications is innovation, with brand owners seeking greater on-shelf differentiation through superior aesthetics and functionality. Supermarket shelves are cluttered with brand imitations, and the lead brand must stand out from the rest. Consequently, the role of plastic packaging continues to grow in importance within the plastic injection molding industry.