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State of Packaging 2010

By: Jeff Falk
Posted: August 31, 2010, from the September 2010 issue of GCI Magazine.

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The need to innovate and create packaging that grabs attention and resonates with consumers is even more important. At the same time, the possibility of a recovery is mirrored in these choices as well—we’re seeing firms selecting brighter, happier colors that inspire optimism.

Bakic: The past two years were dominated by budget restrictions and a lower level of activity with respect to new launches. Today, we feel this vacuum needs to be fed and many of our customers—although still cautious—are now urgently seeking innovation and ways to differentiate.

Izquierdo: During the past two years, the beauty packaging industry was adversely affected by the economic downturn, just like many other market sectors. As a result, many suppliers of primary packaging elements such as tubes, caps and pumps, reduced product stock to decrease overhead and improve profitability. This, in turn, led to longer delivery times to get products to market and impacted future growth, as packaging manufacturers had a limited supply they could leverage to respond to new business opportunities.

However, the economic climate has been improving overall, and we will continue to see steady growth in the foreseeable future. PMMI’s third quarter economic outlook report indicates personal care product packaging, which includes cosmetics, will grow by 4.1% in 2010 and will increase by another margin of 4.1% in 2011.

Bielefeldt: Starting in late 2008 and carrying through most of 2009, beauty companies postponed a lot of custom bottle projects that were in the early stages. Instead of updating their packaging, most of these companies continued to use the packaging they were already using until they were confident sales had picked up again. A few other companies may have changed their packaging as scheduled, but utilized stock packaging components instead of custom bottles and closures. So now, there are a lot of projects and packaging updates that had been postponed and are now being resumed half way through 2010. We expect late 2010 and all of 2011 to be very busy with custom bottle projects.

Q: What are the primary global trends—across industries, markets and sectors—that have impacted how and what you’ve created?