Where is packaging headed? Trends for the next decade
In the next decade, there are several trends that are expected to shape the future of packaging.
Consumers are becoming increasingly conscious of the impact that packaging has on the environment. And not only that, in certain areas and countries there are new regulations being set. As a result, companies are looking for ways to make their packaging more sustainable, such as using biodegradable materials, implementing recycling programs, offering refills and minimising packaging altogether.
A good example of minimal packaging this is Lush‘s approach “Naked products” meaning a selection of their products don’t have packaging at all.
On the subject of sustainability, it’s important to mention food as well. Minimizing food waste is a crucial goal for policymakers, as up to 40% of food produced globally goes uneaten. Modern packaging technology can play a significant role in achieving this goal by helping extend the shelf-life of food, especially in underdeveloped markets where refrigerated retail infrastructure is inadequate. There is a significant amount of research and development taking place to enhance packaging barrier technology, which includes incorporating nano-engineered materials.
With busy lifestyles becoming the norm, consumers are looking for packaging that is convenient and easy to use. Brands are responding by developing packaging that is easy to open, reseal, and dispose of. In fact, there is a condition called wrap rage which represents heightened feelings of anger from the inability or difficulty when opening a package.
And overall accessibility of the packaging will be in focus more as well, including the already mentioned ease of use, clarity and readability and so on.
The increasing number of single-person households in the 21st century has led to a rise in demand for smaller portion-sized goods in addition to reasealability or microwavable options.
Smart, technology filled packaging
With the rise of e-commerce, consumers are demanding more transparency in the supply chain. Companies are responding by implementing traceability systems in their packaging, allowing customers to track the journey of their products from the manufacturer to the retailer.
Smart packaging is gaining popularity in the industry, it includes packaging that can interact with the consumer, such as providing product information, communicating with a smartphone app, or even providing feedback on the product’s freshness.
Photos taken from Unsplash.com and Pexels.com.