Global Folding Cartons Market Set to Reach Over $100 billion by 2020

The global folding cartons market will be worth over $100 billion by 2020 and will consume almost 47 million tonnes, according to a new market study by Smithers Pira.

June 24, 2015 - The $87 billion market for folding cartons, already dominated by demand from the Asia-Pacific sector, is set to undergo more of a shift towards this region. It is expected to increase its share of the world market from 52% of the volume consumed in 2014, to more than 60% of the forecast 2020 market. Key to the increasing dominance from this region is the growth in demand from China, which will increase its share of the market from 31% in 2010 to 39% by 2020, assisted by growing consumption in the Indian sub-continent, which will consume over 6% of the total in 2020.

A new study from Smithers Pira — The Future of Folding Cartons to 2020 — shows that health care products are the single largest users of folding cartons, followed by tobacco, and it is these two industries that face the most significant challenges in folding carton usage. Other market influences include heightened demand in packaging for household care products. Global demand for small electrical appliances, including smart phones, is driving up consumption of mini-flute and folding carton packaging, while the recession has seen an increase in DIY and automotive parts.

The popularity of dry foods, especially in Asia, is driving up demand for folding cartons; conversely, the gradual improvement in these distribution chains and the expansion of supermarkets in this region also stimulates folding carton consumption in frozen and chilled food applications.

Source: Smithers Pira

The Future of Folding Cartons to 2020 outlines that the entire supply chain in this market faces ever-growing pressure from its customer base to come up with innovative techniques, processes and designs to enable the sometimes fickle brand owners to differentiate their products on the highly competitive supermarket shelf. Consequently, converters and printers are facing a need for on-going investment in new printing technology that offers more colours and more impactful finishing techniques such as hot-foiling, embossing, spot varnishing and the like.

The end result of these many influences and trends is a growing market, with end use consumption of folding carton packaging expected to increase by nearly 5% in 2015, followed by a period of sustained growth of around 3.5% annually, worth $106 billion at constant 2014 prices.

The Future of Folding Cartons to 2020 is available now from Smithers Pira. For more information, please visit

Smithers Pira is the worldwide authority on packaging, paper and print industry supply chains. Established in 1930, Smithers Pira provides strategic and technical consulting, testing, intelligence and events to help clients gain market insights, identify opportunities, evaluate product performance and manage compliance.

SOURCE: Smithers Pira