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Food and Drink Packaging Trends - UK - February 2013

“The food and drink industry suffers a bad reputation for excessive packaging, with most consumers deeming a lot of packaging to be superfluous. There is scope for manufacturers to overturn this negative perception by communicating to consumers the positive impact packaging can have on the environment by extending the shelf life of food and reducing food waste – particularly given notable technological advancements in this area.”
– Emma Clifford, Senior Food Analyst
Some questions answered in this report include:

  • Does the food and drink packaging industry need to do more to react to the UK’s ageing population?
  • How can manufacturers change consumers’ negative attitudes towards packaging?
  • How can package design be used to heighten engagement with customers?
  • How can cross-category influences inject excitement into packaging NPD?

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Definition
        • Abbreviations
        • Executive Summary

            • Market factors
              • The ageing population presents opportunities
                • Figure 1: Trends in the age structure of the UK population, 2007-17
              • The shift towards smaller households
                • Squeezed incomes see interest in green issues wane
                  • Innovation in the market
                    • New packaging NPD rises in 2012
                      • Figure 2: New packaging NPD in food and drink, share of new launches, 2009-12
                    • Plastic packaging continues to dominate food launches
                      • Figure 3: NPD in food, share of launches, by packaging material*, 2009-12
                    • The consumer
                      • Attributes that lengthen shelf life take centre stage
                        • Figure 4: Qualities seen as important for food and drink packaging, October 2012
                      • Many consumers hold a negative perception of packaging
                        • Figure 5: Attitudes towards food packaging, by gender, October 2012
                      • Glass bottles are the nation’s favourite
                        • Figure 6: Important qualities for packaging of beer/cider, wine and spirits, October 2012
                      • Glass bottles stand out for attractiveness, freshness and quality
                        • Figure 7: Correspondence map showing the attributes associated with glass bottles, plastic bottles, cartons and cans, October 2012
                      • Being reclosable is an important user-friendly feature for soft drinks
                        • Figure 8: Attitudes towards packaging of non-alcoholic drinks, by gender, October 2012
                      • What we think
                      • Issues in the Market

                          • Does the food and drink packaging industry need to do more to react to the UK’s ageing population?
                            • How can manufacturers change consumers’ negative attitudes towards packaging?
                              • How can package design be used to heighten engagement with customers?
                                • How can cross-category influences inject excitement into packaging NPD?
                                • Trend Application

                                    • Trend: Hungry Planet
                                      • Trend: Perfecting the Details
                                      • Market Drivers

                                        • Key points
                                          • Recycling and other green issues
                                            • With budgets under strain, consumers have become less green
                                              • Figure 9: Change in agreement with selected lifestyle statements on recycling and the environment, 2008-12
                                              • Figure 10: Agreement with the statements ‘People have a duty to recycle’ and ‘I make a conscious effort to recycle’, by gender and age, 2012
                                            • Defra update on UK recycling
                                              • Packaging recycling targets
                                                • Figure 11: Business recovery and recycling targets for Great Britain, 2012-17
                                                • Figure 12: Business recovery and recycling targets for Great Britain, glass specification, 2012-17
                                              • Diminished interest in CSR
                                                • Figure 13: Agreement with selected statements regarding the ethical credentials of companies, 2008-12
                                              • Convenience and nutrition
                                                • Convenience trumps aesthetic appeal
                                                  • Figure 14: Agreement with selected statements regarding convenience and packaging as factors in purchase choice, 2008-12
                                                • Almost half of consumers read the ingredients on food labels
                                                  • Figure 15: Agreement with selected statements regarding food labels, 2008-12
                                                • Demographic trends
                                                  • Ageing population presents demand for innovation
                                                    • Figure 16: Trends in the age structure of the UK population, 2007-17
                                                  • Growth of one-person households fuels NPD in single-serve format
                                                    • Figure 17: UK households, by size, 2007-17
                                                • Strengths and Weaknesses

                                                  • Strengths
                                                    • Weaknesses
                                                    • Retailer and Manufacturer Initiatives

                                                      • Key points
                                                        • Companies acting to reduce waste
                                                          • The Courtauld Commitment Phase 2 comes to an end
                                                            • Figure 18: October 2012 update of the three-year plan for the Courtauld Commitment
                                                          • Retailer and manufacturer initiatives
                                                            • Marks & Spencer
                                                              • Sainsbury’s
                                                                • Tesco
                                                                  • Asda
                                                                    • The Co-operative
                                                                      • Morrisons
                                                                        • Unilever
                                                                          • P&G
                                                                            • Coca-Cola
                                                                              • Nestlé to roll out new digital labelling scheme
                                                                              • Who’s Innovating?

                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                  • New packaging NPD rises in 2012
                                                                                    • Figure 19: New packaging NPD in food and drink, share of new launches, 2009-12
                                                                                  • Plastic packaging continues to dominate food launches
                                                                                    • Figure 20: NPD in food, share of launches, by packaging material*, 2009-12
                                                                                    • Figure 21: NPD in food, share of launches, by packaging type*, 2009-12
                                                                                    • Figure 22: NPD in food, share of launches, by storage, 2009-12
                                                                                  • Cross-category trends
                                                                                    • Resealability becomes increasingly well established
                                                                                      • Innovation helping to keep food fresher for longer
                                                                                        • Creating more environmentally friendly packaging
                                                                                          • Capitalising on patriotic themes through packaging design
                                                                                            • Glass bottles continue to dominate NPD in alcoholic drinks…
                                                                                              • Figure 23: NPD in alcoholic drink, share of launches, by packaging material, 2009-12
                                                                                            • …while plastic is most prevalent in non-alcoholic drinks NPD
                                                                                              • Figure 24: NPD in non-alcoholic drink, share of launches, by packaging material, 2009-12
                                                                                              • Figure 25: NPD in non-alcoholic drink, share of launches, by packaging type, 2009-12
                                                                                            • Shrinking products within the carbonated soft drinks market
                                                                                              • Alcoholic drinks lead packaging design innovation
                                                                                                • Soft drinks also look to bold packaging design for standout
                                                                                                • The Consumer – Choice Factors – Food and Drink Packaging

                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                    • Attributes that improve longevity take centre stage
                                                                                                        • Figure 26: Qualities seen as important for food and drink packaging, October 2012
                                                                                                      • Consumers are attracted to resealable packaging
                                                                                                          • Figure 27: Consumers ranking keeping food fresher for longer and being resealable as important qualities for packaging, by age and socio-economic group, October 2012
                                                                                                        • Over-55s are most concerned with practicality
                                                                                                          • Figure 28: Consumers ranking easy to open and easy to store as important qualities for packaging, by age, October 2012
                                                                                                        • Under-35s are uninterested in recyclability
                                                                                                          • Figure 29: Consumers ranking recyclable as an important quality for packaging, by gender, age and socio-economic group, October 2012
                                                                                                        • Interest in aesthetics is heavily skewed towards under-25s
                                                                                                          • Figure 30: Consumers ranking being attractive and lightweight as important qualities for packaging, by gender and age, October 2012
                                                                                                        • Limited demand for lightweight or transparent packaging
                                                                                                        • The Consumer – Attitudes Towards Food Packaging

                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                            • Consumers see a lot of packaging as wasteful
                                                                                                                • Figure 31: Attitudes towards food packaging, by gender, October 2012
                                                                                                                • Figure 32: Agreement with the statement ‘I think a lot of packaging is unnecessary’, by age, October 2012
                                                                                                              • Packaging is seen as potentially misleading
                                                                                                                • A third are sceptical about the value offered by bigger packs
                                                                                                                  • Figure 33: Agreement with the statements ‘I don’t think that bigger packs always offer better value’ and ‘I’m buying smaller packs to avoid waste’, by age and household size, October 2012
                                                                                                                • One in six want packaging food can be heated in
                                                                                                                  • Recycling logos are overlooked by the majority
                                                                                                                    • Figure 34: Agreement with the statement ‘I look out for the official recycling logos on food packaging’, by age and socio-economic group, October 2012
                                                                                                                  • Glass jars versus pouches
                                                                                                                    • Figure 35: Agreement with the statements ‘I think that food is freshest when it is packaged in glass jars’ and ‘I think that food is freshest when it is packaged in pouches’, by age, October 2012
                                                                                                                • The Consumer – Important Qualities in Packaging of Beer/Cider, Wine and Spirits

                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                    • Glass bottles are the nation’s favourite….
                                                                                                                        • Figure 36: Important qualities for packaging of beer/cider, wine and spirits, October 2012
                                                                                                                        • Figure 37: Consumers who consider a glass bottle important for beer/cider, wine and spirits, by age and socio-economic group, October 2012
                                                                                                                      • …while cans struggle to appeal, despite their widespread use
                                                                                                                        • Being reclosable is important for wine and spirits
                                                                                                                          • Consumers want beer/cider to be cold and easily stackable
                                                                                                                            • Recyclability is a key feature for older consumers
                                                                                                                              • Figure 38: Consumers who consider being recyclable an important quality for packaging of beer/cider, wine and spirits, by age and socio-economic group, October 2012
                                                                                                                            • Under-25s are interested in appearances more than brands
                                                                                                                              • Figure 39: Consumers who consider ‘looking good to be seen with’ an important quality for packaging of beer/cider, wine and spirits, by age, October 2012
                                                                                                                              • Figure 40: Consumers who consider ‘clearly showing the brand they are drinking’ as an important quality for packaging of beer/cider, wine and spirits, by age, October 2012
                                                                                                                          • The Consumer – Alcoholic and Non-alcoholic Drink Packaging Attributes

                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                              • Glass bottles stand out for attractiveness, freshness and quality
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 41: Attributes associated with selected drinks packaging types, October 2012
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 42: Correspondence map showing the attributes associated with glass bottles, plastic bottles, cartons and cans, October 2012
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 43: Consumers who associate glass bottles with preserving quality, suitability for chilling, freshness and being environmentally friendly, by age, October 2012
                                                                                                                                • Glass bottles are identified as both old-fashioned and modern
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 44: Consumers who associate glass bottles with being old-fashioned and being modern, by age, October 2012
                                                                                                                                • Plastic bottles are most closely associated with portability and safety
                                                                                                                                  • Cans also score well on practical features
                                                                                                                                    • Cartons are favoured by women
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 45: Attributes associated with drink cartons, by gender, October 2012
                                                                                                                                  • The Consumer – Attitudes Towards Packaging for Non-alcoholic Drinks

                                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                                      • Being reclosable is an important user-friendly feature
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 46: Attitudes towards packaging of non-alcoholic drinks, by gender, October 2012
                                                                                                                                        • Niche demand for individual servings
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 47: Agreement with the statements ‘I would be interested in buying individual sachets of my favourite coffee brand’ and ‘I buy individually wrapped tea bags/ coffee sachets as this protects the freshness’, by age and region, October 2012
                                                                                                                                        • One in ten want smaller pack sizes
                                                                                                                                          • Notable demand for healthier drinks in child-oriented packaging
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 48: Agreement with the statement ‘I would like to see more healthy drinks in packaging that appeals to children’, by presence of children, October 2012
                                                                                                                                        • Appendix – Market Drivers

                                                                                                                                            • Figure 49: Agreement with selected lifestyle statements on recycling and the environment, 2008-12
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 50: Agreement with selected lifestyle statements on recycling and the environment, by demographics, 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 51: Agreement with selected statements regarding the ethical credentials of companies, by demographics, 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 52: Agreement with selected lifestyle statements, 2008-12
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 53: Agreement with selected statements regarding convenience and packaging as factors in purchase choice, by demographics, 2012
                                                                                                                                        • Appendix – The Consumer – Choice Factors – Food and Drink Packaging

                                                                                                                                            • Figure 54: Most popular qualities for food and drink packaging, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 55: Next most popular qualities for food and drink packaging, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                        • Appendix – The Consumer – Attitudes Towards Food Packaging

                                                                                                                                            • Figure 56: Most popular attitudes towards food packaging, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 57: Next most popular attitudes towards food packaging, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                        • Appendix – The Consumer – Important Qualities in Packaging of Beer/Cider, Wine and Spirits

                                                                                                                                            • Figure 58: Most popular qualities for packaging of beer/cider, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 59: Next most popular qualities for packaging of beer/cider, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 60: Most popular qualities for packaging of wine, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 61: Next most popular qualities for packaging of wine, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 62: Most popular qualities for packaging of spirits, including ready-to-drink mixers, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 63: Next most popular qualities for packaging of spirits, including ready-to-drink mixers, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                        • Appendix – The Consumer – Alcoholic and Non-alcoholic Drink Packaging Attributes

                                                                                                                                            • Figure 64: Most popular attributes associated with drink cans, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 65: Next most popular attributes associated with drink cans, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 66: Most popular attributes associated with plastic drink bottles, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 67: Next most popular attributes associated with plastic drink bottles, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 68: Most popular attributes associated with glass drink bottles, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 69: Next most popular attributes associated with glass drink bottles, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 70: Most popular attributes associated with drink cartons, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 71: Next most popular attributes associated with drink cartons, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 72: Most popular attributes associated with none of the above-mentioned types of drink packaging, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 73: Next most popular attributes associated with none of the above-mentioned types of drink packaging, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                        • Appendix – The Consumer – Attitudes Towards Packaging for Non-alcoholic Drinks

                                                                                                                                            • Figure 74: Most popular attitudes towards drink packaging, by demographics, October 2012
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 75: Next most popular attitudes towards drink packaging, by demographics, October 2012

                                                                                                                                        Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                        • Asda Group Ltd
                                                                                                                                        • Britvic Soft Drinks
                                                                                                                                        • Coca-Cola GB
                                                                                                                                        • Harvey Nichols UK
                                                                                                                                        • HJ Heinz Company UK
                                                                                                                                        • J. Sainsbury
                                                                                                                                        • Jean Paul Gaultier SA
                                                                                                                                        • Kraft Foods Inc.
                                                                                                                                        • Kraft Foods UK
                                                                                                                                        • LINPAC Plastics Ltd
                                                                                                                                        • Marks & Spencer
                                                                                                                                        • Mornflake Oats
                                                                                                                                        • Nestlé UK Ltd
                                                                                                                                        • New Covent Garden Food Co
                                                                                                                                        • Pepsi-Cola UK
                                                                                                                                        • Pernod Ricard
                                                                                                                                        • Tesco Plc
                                                                                                                                        • Waitrose
                                                                                                                                        • Whitworths Limited

                                                                                                                                        Food and Drink Packaging Trends - UK - February 2013

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