Boring. Banal. And worth a bundle.
We’re talking about the U.S. caps and closures market, which is projected to reach $10.4 billion in 2016, representing 280 billion units. Do the math: that’s about a thousand plastic caps per American that year!
Why such a huge increase? More Americans will be living then, of course. But at least some of that increase will be because of material price increases and increased use of value-added dispensing and child-resistant caps.
The market for single-serving containers, especially in the beverage industry, will drive this market rise. Further inroads by plastic containers into markets once commanded by glass and metal containers will also help. The further increase of plastic caps and closures on other container types, such as gabletop cartons, aseptic cartons and stand-up pouches will also push demand. Limiting factors to growth will be the topping-out of several large beverage markets and competition from such “non-closure” closures as peel-able lidding and blister packaging.
Plastic caps and closures, by a wide margin the leading closure material, will show above average increases through 2016 because of the ubiquity of plastic containers and the increased use of plastic closures on other types of containers.
Dispensing caps, which are usually more costly than standard plastic caps, and preferred by most people because of their usability and convenience, will show the most rapid gains among the chief plastic closure categories.
As metal closures will lose market share to plastic closures, increased use of aluminum screw-on closures in the wine market will provide a growth area for this type of closure.
Drugs will be the most rapidly-growing caps and closures market until 2016, aided by the ever-increasing 65+ age group and medical regimens which emphasize medicines over surgery. Furthermore, plastic caps and closure manufacturers will be helped by the plethora of government regulations surrounding child-resistant, senior-friendly and security features on drug vials.
Beverages are by far the largest market for caps and closures. While the popularity of single-serving bottles will stimulate unit gains, this market will affected negatively by greater use of lighter weight, less costly closures. The carbonated soft drink market is expected to transition from two-piece polypropylene caps to lower-priced one-piece linerless caps made from high density polyethylene (HDPE).
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