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Food and Drink Packaging Trends - UK - January 2012

“Three in four consumers state that it is important for brands/companies to invest in sustainable packaging, highlighting how this interest is translating into higher expectations on companies, suggesting opportunities for brands to stand out based on their credentials in this area. This reflects a broader trend identified by Mintel’s Inspire trend Moral Brands, which looks at how consumers don’t need to spend time or money being ethical when the ‘moral brand’ can do it on their behalf.”

– Amy Lloyd, Food and Drink Analyst

Some questions answered in this report include:

  • What do consumers look for from packaging?
  • Can brands drive demand by acting ethically on consumers’ behalf?
  • How can packaging innovation help engage the mature consumer?
  • What are the implications of the UK’s changing household population for packaging?
  • In what areas is there most potential for new drinks packaging formats?

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Definition
        • Abbreviations
        • Executive Summary

            • The landscape
              • The impact of rising material costs
                • The future
                  • Market factors
                    • Growth in C2s bodes well for future of recycling
                      • A growing need to cater to the ageing population
                        • Smaller households to see biggest increase
                          • Innovation in the market
                            • Figure 1: NPD in food, percentage of launches, by packaging material, 2009-11
                          • Plastic continues to dominate
                            • Pack sizes look to smaller households
                              • Alcoholic drinks packaging favours traditional formats
                                • The consumer
                                  • Prolonging the life of a product appeals to consumers
                                    • Figure 2: Factors influencing choice of food and drink packaging, October 2011
                                  • Consumers see sell-by/use-by/best-before dates as an important labelling factor
                                    • Figure 3: Labelling factors consumers look for before purchasing food items, October 2011
                                  • The majority of consumers recycle drinks packaging
                                    • Figure 4: Agreement with statements on alcoholic drink packaging, October 2011
                                  • Consumers look to food/drink companies and the government to help them reduce packaging
                                    • Figure 5: Agreement with statements on food and drink packaging, October 2011
                                  • What we think
                                  • Issues in the Market

                                      • What do consumers look for from packaging?
                                        • Can brands drive demand by acting ethically on consumers’ behalf?
                                          • How can packaging innovation help engage the mature consumer?
                                            • What are the implications of the UK’s changing household population for packaging?
                                              • In what areas is there most potential for new drinks packaging formats?
                                              • Future Opportunities

                                                  • Hungry Planet
                                                    • Play Ethic
                                                    • Internal Market Environment

                                                      • Key points
                                                        • Ethical concerns wane…
                                                          • Figure 6: Trends in agreement with selected statements regarding ‘green’ lifestyles, 2007-11
                                                        • …which WRAP hopes to counter
                                                          • CSR loses interest
                                                            • Figure 7: Agreement with lifestyle statements regarding company ethics, 2007-11
                                                          • Provenance gains traction for labelling
                                                            • Convenience appeals to a sizeable minority of consumers...
                                                              • Figure 8: Agreement with the statement ‘Convenience often plays a part in my purchase decisions’, 2007-11
                                                            • …while attractiveness appeals to less than 10%
                                                              • Figure 9: Agreement with the statement ‘I often buy a product because of its nice packaging’, 2007-11
                                                          • Broader Market Environment

                                                            • Key points
                                                              • Packaging recycling targets
                                                                • Figure 10: Business recovery and recycling targets for Great Britain, 2012-20
                                                              • Looking to technological developments
                                                                • Rising cost of raw materials
                                                                  • Demographic changes lead to innovation
                                                                    • Increase in over-55s calls for easy-open innovation
                                                                      • Figure 11: Forecast adult population trends, by age, 2006-11 and 2011-16
                                                                    • Rise in one-person households fuels NPD in single-serve formats
                                                                      • Figure 12: Change in UK households, by size, 2006-11 and 2011-16
                                                                    • Rising C2s are most likely to rate ‘recyclable’
                                                                    • Strengths and Weaknesses

                                                                      • Strengths
                                                                        • Weaknesses
                                                                        • Retailer and Manufacturer Initiatives

                                                                          • Key points
                                                                            • The Courtauld Commitment begins Phase 2
                                                                              • WRAP and Defra promote innovation initiatives
                                                                                • Retailer initiatives
                                                                                  • Manufacturer initiatives
                                                                                  • Who’s Innovating?

                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                      • Plastic packaging dominates food launches
                                                                                        • Figure 13: NPD in food, percentage of launches, by packaging material, 2009-11
                                                                                        • Figure 14: NPD in food, percentage of launches, by packaging type, 2009-11
                                                                                      • Smaller pack sizes are buoyant in the food category
                                                                                        • Figure 15: Product launches in the food market, by pack size (top ten most common sizes), 2009-11
                                                                                      • Packaging NPD in the food category looks to aid consumer usage and browsing
                                                                                        • Offering convenience to consumers
                                                                                          • Frozen formats aid storage and cooking times
                                                                                            • Revamping packaging design to aid consumer browsing
                                                                                              • Real innovation in greener packaging for the milk and coffee categories
                                                                                                • Other
                                                                                                  • Alcoholic drinks packaging continues to favour glass and bottles...
                                                                                                    • …and looks to packaging as a means of revitalisation
                                                                                                      • Gift packs enjoy limited appeal
                                                                                                        • Brands turn to limited editions to drive engagement
                                                                                                        • Consumer Usage – Packaging Attributes

                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                            • Consumers rate attributes that improve longevity…
                                                                                                                • Figure 16: Factors influencing choice of food and drink packaging, October 2011
                                                                                                              • …causing packaging manufacturers to react
                                                                                                                • Older consumers favour ease of opening, younger consumers attractiveness
                                                                                                                    • Figure 17: Factors influencing choice of food and drink packaging, by age, October 2011
                                                                                                                  • Ethical packaging appeals to just half of consumers
                                                                                                                  • Consumer Usage – Labelling Attributes

                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                      • Consumers consider sell/use-by and best-before dates before price
                                                                                                                          • Figure 18: Labelling factors consumers look for before purchasing food items, October 2011
                                                                                                                        • Consumers rank ingredients and nutritional content above GDA guidelines
                                                                                                                          • Women rate nutritional information, men weight
                                                                                                                            • Figure 19: Net difference* between labelling factors consumers look for before purchasing food items, by gender, October 2011
                                                                                                                          • Country of origin is important to the over-55s and ABs
                                                                                                                            • Figure 20: Index of country-of-origin labelling as a factor consumers look for before purchasing food items, by age, socio-economic group and household income, October 2011
                                                                                                                        • Consumer Attitudes Towards Drink Packaging

                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                            • The vast majority of consumers recycle drinks packaging
                                                                                                                                • Figure 21: Agreement with statements on alcoholic drink packaging, October 2011
                                                                                                                              • Young more open to new packaging formats
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 22: Agreement with statements on alcoholic drink packaging, by age, October 2011
                                                                                                                                • Label information of importance to ABs
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 23: Agreement with the statement ‘I pay more attention to labels than packaging when choosing an alcoholic drink’, by socio-economic group, October 2011
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 24: Agreement with statement ‘I pay more attention to labels than packaging when choosing an alcoholic drink’, by supermarket used, October 2011
                                                                                                                                • Around a third of consumers pay no attention to drinks packaging
                                                                                                                                  • Majority unwilling to pay for gift-wrapped packaging
                                                                                                                                  • Consumer Attitudes Towards Food and Drink Packaging

                                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                                      • Consumers look to food/drink companies and the government to help them reduce packaging
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 25: Agreement with statements on food and drink packaging, October 2011
                                                                                                                                        • The over-55s believe in company and government involvement
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 26: Agreement with statements on food and drink packaging, by age, October 2011
                                                                                                                                        • Clear packaging allays consumer concerns
                                                                                                                                          • Minimal and biodegradable packaging appeals to sizeable group
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 27: Agreement with statement ‘I look out for packaging that is biodegradable’, by socio-economic group and annual household income, October 2011
                                                                                                                                            • Variety of pack sizes appeals to small and large households
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 28: Agreement with statement ‘I would like to see a wider variety of pack sizes’, by household size (number of members), October 2011
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 29: Index of agreement with statement ‘I would like to see a wider variety of pack sizes’, by gender and age, October 2011
                                                                                                                                            • Female consumers see labelling information as important
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 30: Agreement with statement ‘I pay great attention to product information on labels eg price, nutrition etc’, by gender, October 2011
                                                                                                                                          • The Consumer – Targeting Opportunities

                                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                                              • Three target groups
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 31: Target groups based on attitudes towards food and drink packaging, October 2011
                                                                                                                                              • Disengaged (29%)
                                                                                                                                                • Appearance-Driven (32%)
                                                                                                                                                  • Ethical (39%)
                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Internal Market Environment

                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 32: Agreement with selected lifestyle statements, 2007-11
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 33: Agreement with selected lifestyle statements, by demographics, 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 34: Agreement with selected lifestyle statements, by demographics, 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 35: Agreement with selected lifestyle statements, by demographics, 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 36: Agreement with selected lifestyle statements, by demographics, 2011
                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Broader Market Environment

                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 37: European packaging recovery and recycling targets and UK achievement, by material type, 2010
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 38: Increase in packaging used; kg per person, 1998-2007
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 39: Forecast adult population trends, by socio-economic group, 2006-16
                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Who’s Innovating?

                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 40: NPD in food, percentage of launches, by packaging material, 2009-11
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 41: NPD in food, percentage of launches, by packaging type, 2009-11
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 42: Product launches in the alcoholic drinks market, by pack size, 2009-11
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 43: Product launches in the alcoholic drinks market, by package type, 2009-11
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 44: Product launches in the alcoholic drinks market, by package material, 2009-11
                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Consumer – Packaging Attributes

                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 45: Most popular factors influencing choice of food and drink packaging, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 46: Next most popular factors influencing choice of food and drink packaging, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Consumer – Labelling Attributes

                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 47: Most popular labelling factors consumers look for before purchasing food items, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 48: Next most popular labelling factors consumers look for before purchasing food items, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Consumer – Attitudes Towards Drink Packaging

                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 49: Agreement with statements on alcoholic drink packaging, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 50: Agreement with statements ‘I always recycle my drink bottles/cans’ and ‘I prefer bottled drinks over canned/plastic’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 51: Agreement with statements ‘I sometimes choose a new product if the packaging catches my eye’ and ‘I pay more attention to labels than packaging when choosing an alcoholic drink’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 52: Agreement with statements ‘I look for drinks packaging that is recyclable’ and ‘I think that canned/plastic drinks packaging is more convenient than glass’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 53: Agreement with statements ‘I pay no attention to drinks packaging when choosing an alcoholic drink’ and ‘I think that wine in pouches/boxes is as good quality as that in glass bottles’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 54: Agreement with statements ‘I like to try new formats eg wine pouches, single-serve glasses etc’ and ‘I look out for packaging which preserves alcoholic drinks for longer’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 55: Agreement with statements ‘It's worth paying more for gift-wrapped alcoholic drinks’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Consumer – Attitudes Towards Food and Drink Packaging

                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 56: Agreement with statements on food and drink packaging, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 57: Agreement with statements ‘It is up to food/drink companies to reduce packaging waste’ and ‘It is important for brands/companies to invest in sustainable packaging’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 58: Agreement with statements ‘The government should do more to reduce packaging waste’ and ‘I prefer clear packaging that allows me to view the product’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 59: Agreement with statements ‘I pay great attention to product information on labels eg price, nutrition etc’ and ‘I sometimes find it hard to tell how much packaging is inside a product’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 60: Agreement with statements ‘I would like to see a wider variety of pack sizes’ and ‘I look out for products with minimal packaging’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 61: Agreement with statements ‘I find it easier to recycle glass than plastic’ and ‘I look out for packaging that is biodegradable’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 62: Agreement with statements ‘I do not care how much packaging food and drink products have’, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Targeting Opportunities

                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 63: Target groups, by demographics, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 64: Factors influencing choice of food and drink packaging, by target groups, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 65: Labelling factors consumers look for before purchasing food items, by target groups, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 66: Agreement with statements on alcoholic drink packaging, by target groups, October 2011
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 67: Agreement with statements on food and drink packaging, by target groups, October 2011

                                                                                                                                                  Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                  • Absolut Spirits Company (USA)
                                                                                                                                                  • Accolade Wines
                                                                                                                                                  • Asda Group Ltd
                                                                                                                                                  • Birds Eye Foods
                                                                                                                                                  • Coca-Cola GB
                                                                                                                                                  • Dairy Crest Group plc
                                                                                                                                                  • Douwe Egberts UK
                                                                                                                                                  • Häagen-Dazs
                                                                                                                                                  • HJ Heinz Company UK
                                                                                                                                                  • Innocent Drinks Ltd
                                                                                                                                                  • J. Sainsbury
                                                                                                                                                  • Lea & Perrins
                                                                                                                                                  • Marks & Spencer
                                                                                                                                                  • Ocean Spray Cranberries, Inc
                                                                                                                                                  • Plysu [Nampak Limited]
                                                                                                                                                  • Tesco Plc
                                                                                                                                                  • The Kenco Coffee Company
                                                                                                                                                  • Waitrose Ltd
                                                                                                                                                  • Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP)
                                                                                                                                                  • Wm Morrison Supermarkets

                                                                                                                                                  Food and Drink Packaging Trends - UK - January 2012

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