• Recent innovations in RRP have put sustainability front and centre.
    Recent innovations in RRP have put sustainability front and centre.

A recent study by Global Market Insights, titled Retail Ready Packaging (RRP) market, shows that the global market for this segment is set to surpass $78.9 billion by 2026.

Recent innovations in RRP have put sustainability front and centre, and as stated in the report, consumers globally are now demanding more sustainably-focused packaging for their products.

“Retailers and fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies are making audacious commitments to redefine the dynamics and bring sustainability to the fore,” the report stated.

“There are no doubts that the go-to-strategy of retailers has hovered around minimising material usage and reducing weight to subsequently lower the packaging cost.

“Although, the pendulum has swung towards retail packaging as an innovative last-mile solution taking the brand experience to a whole new level.”

In recent years, leading companies have been developing solutions that streamline rotation and replenishment of off-the-shelf products, while boosting consumer interaction by optimising shelf space and pallet size.

According to the report, RRP can lead to several benefits, including:

  •          Seamless replenishment in the store;
  •          Brand and promotional communication;
  •          Enhanced merchandising;
  •          Effective supply chains – fewer pallet movements and more product per pallet dispatched; and
  •          Easy navigation and product visibility.

Traction for retail ready cases has risen as stakeholders turn towards more towards RRP due to its proven success in boosting RoI. However, as the report warns, the repercussions of the global pandemic has become the litmus test for stakeholders.

As highlighted in the report, during the instant aftermath of the pandemic, production and supply of cosmetics, food and beverages, and meat and poultry took a back seat, and saw several companies halt its productions and lay off many of its employees.

With the ease of lockdown and a vaccine supposedly around the corner, the question now becomes, how will leading companies plug this hole at the retail level, and what are the bespoke solutions available to help boost revenues?

The report believes that packaging companies will likely rethink their strategies and think beyond performance, costs, and convenience.

The report highlights corrugated boxes as a customisable solution for retailers to spur sales, reduce touch points and negate product damage.

As such, food and beverage industry products, such as soft drinks, bottled water, bulk packaged processed foods, and snack foods have become “a natural fit for the use of corrugated boxes”.

According to the EPA, the recycling rate of generated packaging and containers stood at 53.8 per cent in 2018, meaning out of the 33.9 million tonnes of corrugated boxes were recycled.

“Two trendy topics in recent years, such as hygiene and sustainability, will be the megatrends amidst the pandemic,” the report said.

“A tectonic shift in print technology has brought RRP in a vanguard position, enabling retailers to unpack and receive products on the shelf seamlessly.

“Notably, the use of high-quality flexographic printing method has fuelled the aspirations of brand owners with regards to RRP. With its durability, these boxes save energy as they have a sizeable component of recycled material.”

The report points to investment in paperboard packaging as a major driver for the RRP industry growth.

Spirit producer Diageo announced in July 2020 the creation of what it calls the “world’s first ever 100 per cent plastic-free paper-based spirits bottle”. It is allegedly made from sustainably-sourced pulp and made fully recyclable in standard waste streams.

Frugalpac came up with wine bottles made from 94 per cent recycled paperboard in July 2020 and believes it will help them cut the carbon footprint of each bottle by up to 84 per cent, while also minimising emissions from transporting bottles.

Various specialty paper producers also have turned towards flexible paper-based retail packaging with water-based coatings that can act as a barrier for oxygen, vapour and oil, which can replace plastic packages.

Meanwhile, plastic film producers have been gearing to develop polyethylene packaging solutions that are fully recyclable.

“Food and beverage companies in Australia and around the world have exhibited profound inclination for RRP packaging, thereby providing revenue generating opportunities for the stakeholders,” said the report.

“With increased visibility, enhanced suppliers’ positioning, ideal balance, ultra-efficient handling and optimised logistics and turnover, food and beverages, and cosmetics and personal care are touted to contribute towards the revenue streams for RRP manufacturers.”

Despite all the movements in this space, the report does warn that there are still retailers who want to maintain the status quo.

“Downsides such as high costs and package stability of some products may mar the growth of the industry that is gradually rebounding from the coronavirus,” the report continued.

“With more consumers vouching for the online model and showing interest towards e-commerce platforms, different RRP products have the potential to boost the profit margins for retail firms.”

For a more in-depth look at Global Market Insights latest report, click here.

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