A few years ago, Pack Protocols LLC wrote articles Pack Expo Las Vegas 2019 Wrap Up and New Years Packaging Resolutions highlighting the upcoming packaging industry visions. From these articles we focused on sustainable and smart and intelligent packaging, robots, and cannabis packaging. Since publication of these articles there have been shifts gaining traction in the packaging industry. The pandemic may have assisted in expediting a few of these changes including the mentioned above. Pack Protocols wanted to provide a few visions of where they believe the packaging industry is heading in 2022.

Companies are looking to offset their increased costs incurred by the pandemic

Packaging companies have had to pay more for the majority of material. There as been a shortage due to the pandemic, natural disasters, and other unforeseen instances. Other issues firms are facing including labor losses and increased logistic costs directly impacted profit margins. Higher wages for employees is another topic in itself. Business is looking to recover labor losses by implementing automation. Packaging companies are having a hard time raising product prices due to competition or fear of losing the customer. Businesses are attempting to swing the pendulum back their way instead of the worker and client.

Direct to Consumer (DTC or D2C) models are exploding and will continue to increase

The DTC model has been projected for twenty plus years to grow massively. It is finally happening and not for only internet companies as brick and mortar companies are joining in as well. During the past two years consumers were not visiting retail stores as often, impacting their bottom lines. Both larger corporations and small businesses have evolved to bring their products to the digital domain for on-line purchase. This has allowed some businesses to stay open, thrive and evaluate how they operate in the future.

Product flows are undergoing a revamp of prior iterations

The combination of younger generations prone to order digitally and other demographics following suit due to world conditions is evident. The outcome has caused an influx of orders, added product flow pressures and introduction of new business models. Technological solutions such as: software, robots/cobots, and last mile logistics by a variety of modes has become standard practice (moving towards Industry 5.0). Customers expect items ordered to be shipped, and delivered to in an instant!

Just in Time (JIT) manufacturing and shipping in a global economy especially with the bottlenecks of the pandemic has taken a pause. Companies new visions are to be agile by establishing multiple logistical locations able to manufacture and ship product quickly. Most are doing so by partnering with their current suppliers or finding new logistical partners who can act swiftly. Businesses with large amounts of capital and investment are building their internal network if they do not have it already. This is similar to what Amazon has done over the years to compete with brick and mortar stores. To do so; they may acquiring external suppliers and logistical companies.

Future technologies are coming to the forefront

The emergence of packaging technologies including: digital/3D/ 4D/ UV printing, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and FEA is prevalent. In addition; tracking and tracing technologies like block-chain databases NFC, RFID,QR Codes for packaging, handling, storage, and transportation processes has arrived. The rise of active and intelligent (CAP, MAP, Thermal, etc.) packaging has transformed the standard world of packaging development rapidly.

Firms planning these ideas and technologies into their operations need to be committed and supportive. Like everything, nothing is one hundred percent and businesses need to fully understand this prior to executing.

If your business has visions of implementing these packaging and logistics techniques; do not hesitate to contact us at 657-204-6093 or [email protected]!