For the past few decades, companies whose products are sold in retail try to lure consumers with attractive packaging, be it brilliant colors, catchy designs, elegant materials or original shapes. Remember that 35 % of in store buying decisions depend directly on the product’s shelf impact. But if we listen to the experts, consumers could start looking at your products differently.

The first in a series of four blog posts: Last August, Packaging World, in association with the company DuPont Packaging & Industrial Polymers, conducted a survey involving professionals from the packaging industry and other related sectors in order to learn about the current trends as well as those that could dominate the industry 10 years from now. This blog series will highlight the key points of those results.

Even if the study was conducted on two different continents, the results were analysed and presented separately, thus facilitating the analysis of results from North America, IMS’s market.

Respect for the environment: an effective message

If only the survey respondents are considered, the important packaging characteristics of today according to consumers will be replaced with more environmentally-friendly properties in 2022. According to professionals from the industry, the needs of clients will change entirely. In fact, of the six suggested characteristics, only the safety aspect of materials will conserve its degree of importance.

The most surprising aspect of the results concerns the convenience and user-friendliness of the packaging. Easy to open containers? Boxes and bottles that are easy to ship? Today, if most respondents (81%) believe that this is a priority for consumers, only 39% of them think that it will remain so in the future. Even the shelf appeal lost 31 percentage points between the importance that it has today and will have in 2022.

If we listen to the respondents, awareness of the need to protect the environment will have great consequences on the packaging industry, which will need to adapt to the growing ecological values of consumers. The latter will have an increasing preference for packaging that is recyclable (from 17% in 2012 to 45% in 2022), reusable (from 11% in 2012 to 31% in 2022) and made from environmentally-friendly materials (from 20% in 2012 to 39% in 2022).

Given the results above, it seems clear that sustainable management should be part of your business strategy if you want to win the approval of consumers. In the second blog post of the series, you’ll see that the costs borne by the development of sustainable packaging solutions will go down for many companies. Until next time!