Plastics Today editor Tony Deligio has announced his packaging predictions for 2012. He first remarks that after a rough 2011 year of bag bans, wrap rage, and bottle backlash, the plastic industry looks like it might have a tough year coming up. According to Plastics Today, the plastic industry may be seeing a big change in the coming year, only by lightweighting, renewable content, recycled content, or spoilage impact, will the packaging be able to continue to expand its market share in the packaging industry.

Here is a quick wrap up of what Plastics Today is predicting for the industry in 2012.

Less emphasis on lightweighting the primary packaging. Over the past few years, brandowners as well as packaging suppliers have worked hard to create a lightweight, eco-friendly bottle, but it seems as though the package simply cannot be made any lighter. This year, brandowners may now be looking to reduce the amount of unnecessary and wasteful packaging in the secondary (or tertiary) packaging of products. This may include reexamining goods from the case, the carton and pallet level which all could mean that there may be continued changes in the primary packaging component.








Plastics bags and bottles – the ban battle continues. In 2011, there were several pushes to enforce a bag ban or a bag tax in legislation. Many governments are tight for cash round the globe, and a bag ban or bag tax seems like an easy piece of legislation to pass for more money. Plastics Today also mentions that this is probably not likely to end in 2012 and will likely keep increasing until some unintended consequences take place and consumers and legislatures realize some of the shortfalls of paper and cloth bags.

Biobased PET bottles will become more prevalent. Pepsi, and as mentioned in our previous blog,  “Coke Aspires for 100% Plant-based Bottle by 2020,” Plastics Today is predicting that the bottling industry is effectively pushing for biobased polyethylene terephthalate (PET) based bottles that they are hoping will be replacements for petroleum-based bottles.

More recycling. This year, recycled content will have in important impact on packaging. Many brandowners are proud to show the public if there is any trace of recycled content in their packaging. In turn, this process of creating packaging our of recycled content will help to solve two problem, resource reduction and end of life. Plastics today also predicts with this that recycled content will be increased through advancements in sorting/shredding/cleaning technology.