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Glass - 1 February

A new report suggests that the global glass packaging market will reach a value of $50bn (£32bn) this year.

Analysis by Visiongain, an information provider for the packaging, pharmaceutical, defence, energy and metals industries, says this will largely be driven by emerging market growth and a higher level of disposable income.

It calculates that, of this global market value, 44.7% in market share can be attributed to the leading 20 glass packaging companies (see below).

Visiongain says the glass packaging market will experience modest growth in the developed markets because glass will retain its appeal as a premium product.

Developments in innovation will lead to lower costs and this will benefit demand.

The report adds that developing markets will be characterised by economic growth and a higher level of disposable income. This will benefit the glass packaging market as consumers increase the quantity and quality of their purchases.

The report, Global 20 Leading Glass Packaging Companies 2013: Competitive Landscape Analysis, says: “Historically, glass has had a number of attributes superior to competing materials, but this situation is beginning to change. Innovation in competing materials such as plastic has led to developments in visual appeal, as well as developments in sustainability.

“Presently, glass still has a number of advantages over competing materials; however innovation will be required to maintain these advantages. In the current economic climate, costs have become more pertinent and innovation can be utilised as a way to reduce costs through concepts such as light-weighting’.

The report considers developing trends within the glass packaging market as well as individual insights on the top 20 companies.

Visiongain also notes an increasing shift from glass to plastic packaging, with producers looking to cut production costs by using alternative materials.

The beverage industry is likely to lead a shift from glass to flexible plastic packaging such as PET. The group says the challenge for the sector will be to establish glass as a premium packaging material that enhances products.

In December, the European Container Glass Federation (FEVE) reported that glass packaging production volumes in Europe grew by 1.9% in the first half of 2012.

FEVE says: “The growth is in response to the increasing demand on the internal and outside EU markets. This builds on the positive trend recorded in 2011.

“Despite the unstable economic and financial crisis that negatively affects the whole European manufacturing sector, these records shed a positive light on the stability and future prosperity of the European container glass sector.”

During the first six months of the year, the industry produced 10.9 million tonnes of glass compared with 10.7 million tonnes in the first half of 2011. The biggest increases were in Portugal (13%), Turkey (8.3%) and Poland (7%). The UK figure was 2.9%.

Increasing energy prices, CO2 costs, unfavourable exchange rates and high labour costs are all said to hamper the competitiveness of European producers in the global market. FEVE says the factors combine to restrict long-term investment and encourage incentives to move production outside the EU.

But it notes that the EU manufacturing sector, including the container glass industry, continues to be the main driver of productivity growth in the EU. The European Commission estimates the EU accounts for 30% of global consumption.

FEVE president Stefan Jaenecke says: “The container glass industry is making major efforts to adapt and innovate itself while continuing to meet market demand for a high quality and highly competitive packaging solution.

“But these efforts need to be supported by a legislative and economic framework that encourages the industry to fix long-term and sustainably sound objectives”.

Links to the Visiongain website and sources for the FEVE report at MRW.co.uk/8641806.article

Top 20 glass packaging companies

  • Amcor
  • Anadolu Cam
  • Ardagh Group
  • Bormioli Rocco
  • China Glass Holdings
  • Consol Glass
  • Gerresheimer
  • Heinz Glas
  • Hindustan National Glass & Industries
  • Koa Glass
  • Nihon Yamamura
  • Owens-Illinois
  • Saint-Gobain
  • Stolzle
  • Vetropack
  • Vidrala
  • Vitro Packaging
  • Wiegand-Glas
  • Yioula
  • Zignago Vetro

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