Print companies moving into packaging printing will take heart form the latest Smither Pira report that has the global growth for retail-ready packaging set to increase steadily at an annual rate of four per cent from 2016 to 2021 and to reach a value of $82bn by 2021.

Smithers Pira’s latest report, The Future of Retail-ready Packaging to 2021, finds the RRP market will produce 38.7 million tonnes of paper and plastic materials five years from now.

Smithers consultant and report author Stephen Harrod comments, “Shorter print runs are seen as a key factor driving the RRP market, as more retailers and brand owners are looking to promotional marketing to boost sales.

“These promotions result in unpredictable demand for packaging in general – including RRPs – creating a premium on short runs and quick response to orders.”

Geographically, the report notes North America and Western Europe will be overtaken in terms of market share to Asia-Pacific over the forecast period. It has tipped Asia Pacific and Africa to grow the fastest RRP, with both expected to grow annually by six per cent between 2016 and 2021.

The report says booming demand for RRP has played a part in the development of high-quality, high-speed, wide-format digital printers for corrugated packaging, which were the talk of the industry when unveiled at drupa 2016

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