Get out of the growth jam!

Sustainability is a real driver for growth and a differentiation factor for the packaging industry. However, sustainable product offers will only be successful if the overall package of product and packaging is sustainable. In order to take advantage of the opportunities presented, companies must further professionalize in the area of sustainability. This must be done strategically and selectively. Sustainability does not work by the shotgun approach.


There is no doubt about it: For companies in the packaging industry, sustainability is a resilient path to more growth. The results of the B+P Creality Packaging Report 2020/21 prove it to be true and show which paths lead to success. It provides industry insights into sustainability and packaging for branded goods companies and draws its knowledge not least from the statements of 92 decision makers from leading international companies in the consumer goods industry.

Status and measures in the consumer goods industry

  • 96 percent of the people surveyed from the consumer goods industry are committed to sustainability concepts, and they predominantly attribute competence to themselves in this area.
    • Drivers for the implementation of sustainability concepts are consumer behavior and legal requirements, such as the introduction of the plastics tax.
  • Especially the food industry defines itself as a pioneer of sustainability and wants to take a leading position in the field of sustainable packaging.
  • The main measures of the sustainability concepts are a reduced use of materials, an improvement of the CO2 balance and the increased use of recycled materials. The measures are already proving to be highly effective.

Learnings for the packaging industry?

The sustainability strategies of brand manufacturers in the consumer goods industry can only be transferred to the packaging industry to a limited extent. Overall, it is clear that by no means all of the companies’ activities are successful. There are various reasons:

  • Specific sustainability guidelines are lacking.
  • The additional costs are too high.
  • There are mechanical system constraints.
  • The availability of sustainable materials is too low.
  • The performance of alternative sustainable packaging materials is insufficient.
  • There is a mismatch between increased costs and achieved functionality, such as product protection or convenience.

Learnings for the packaging industry!

Companies in the packaging industry urgently need to further professionalize their sustainability efforts. Blind actionism or uncoordinated measures based on neither strategy nor guidelines inevitably lead to costly failures.

However, it is also clear that there is no way around the sustainability megatrend. Sustainability offers unique opportunities, especially when it comes to growth and differentiation. You just have to approach it the right way.

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