Global glass packaging industry experiencing upswing on popularity of super-premium spirits, rising environmental, purity concerns leading to increased demand from end-markets; substitution of plastic remains primary concern

SAN JOSE, California , February 2, 2012 (press release) – GIA announces the release of a comprehensive global report on the Glass Packaging market. The glass packaging industry is once again experiencing an upswing in the market with the increase in the popularity of super-premium spirits. Rising environmental health, and purity concerns through the use of alternative packaging materials, have surged the demand for glass packaging in certain end-use markets. Growth in the market would be driven by continued reliance on glass packaging from certain applications, such as packaging wine and other spirits. However, the market growth, as a whole, continues to be threatened by the increasing substitution of glass with alternative materials across several end-use markets, primarily by plastic.

Glass, as a packaging material, witnesses renewed focus following instances of the chemicals being associated with other alternative packaging that raised environmental, health, and purity concerns. The safety approval of the general use of glass containers by the US FDA further established the position of the material. The response of the food and beverages industry to the demand for safer packaging was evident by Coca-Cola's move of switching back to glass bottles for packaging its soft drink, Coke, for mainstream retailers. The glass industry is undertaking vigorous research initiatives to develop lighter yet stronger glass containers, as well as novel recycling efforts to increase the collection of superior quality cullet to make glass containers. The industry is also expected to continue educating consumers regarding the health and environmental benefits generated from opting for glass containers.

Glass packaging is generally used for packing upscale natural sodas and juices. Glass stands out on the crowded store shelf for displaying Natural soda or New Age brands. Natural soda or other new brands packaged in glass are more attractive than in other packaging. Even a normal drink, when packed in glass, tends to be more attractive and rich. Super premium spirits have brought the glory of glass packaging back onto the center stage once again. Super premium beverage producers as well as other upscale beverage makers prefer glass packaging to other options and are switching back to glass from plastics. Majority of the beverage companies prefer glass packaging to other types of packaging, for marketing their products. Glass is used as a packaging material due to its ability to preserve taste, its esthetic qualities, its cleanliness, and its recyclability. Major types of glass containers used in packaging include bottles, jars (cosmetic and fruit), jugs, medicinal bottles, and vials.

The demand for healthy, premium beverages designed to improve memory, energy and health is booming with the growing health consciousness of consumers. Most of these premium consumer beverages contain sophisticated ingredients that need superior barrier protection from oxygen and light, which is one of the unique features of glass. The luxury foods and wine industry prefers glass to other materials. Alcoholic beverages are the major end-users of glass containers. Beverage companies use glass containers as marketing tools. The clarity and barrier properties of glass have made it to be most suitable for beverages. The introduction of lightweight glass bottles has diminished the fast rate of replacement of glass by PET. Beer is a major end-use segment for glass containers, with food, non-alcoholic beverages, and cosmetics and fragrances representing other major end-use markets.

The introduction of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tag for glass containers is expected to boost the demand for glass products in the market. The new RFID tag, which portrays better resistance to chemicals and heat, could be integrated into the curved glass plates that include glass bottles and test tubes. Despite the concerted efforts by glass manufacturers, the glass industry still faces strong competition from other materials. Among all the major packaging materials, glass faces the maximum threat of substitution. PET bottles, metal cans and paperboard containers threaten to displace glass from many segments. Glass is facing stiff competition from plastic materials in the food packaging industry. Plastic containers have begun to penetrate into wide-mouth jars and bottles in the food sector.

The research report titled “Glass Packaging: A Global Outlook” announced by Global Industry Analysts Inc., provides a collection of statistical anecdotes, market briefs, and concise summaries of research findings. The report briefly discusses the overview and trends in the global glass packaging market, demand dynamics in various end-use sectors of glass packaging, threat from substitutes, and its demand outlook. The report also recapitulates recent noteworthy mergers, acquisitions, and other strategic developments. Regional markets briefly abstracted include the United States, Canada, France, Germany, UK, Japan, China and India, among others. Market discussions in the report are punctuated with fact-rich market data tables. Also included is an indexed, easy-to-refer, fact-finder directory listing the addresses, and contact details of companies worldwide.

About Global Industry Analysts, Inc.
Global Industry Analysts, Inc., (GIA) is a leading publisher of off-the-shelf market research. Founded in 1987, the company currently employs over 800 people worldwide. Annually, GIA publishes more than 1300 full-scale research reports and analyzes 40,000+ market and technology trends while monitoring more than 126,000 Companies worldwide. Serving over 9500 clients in 27 countries, GIA is recognized today, as one of the world's largest and reputed market research firms.

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