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US demand for beverage containers is projected to advance at an annual pace of 2.2 percent through the year 2003 to 217 billion units.

US demand for beverage containers is projected to advance at an annual pace of 2.2 percent through the year 2003 to 217 billion units. Rising personal incomes, favorable demographic trends, a flurry of new product introductions and the ongoing development of underutilized distribution channels will all buoy beverage consumption, and hence container sales. These and other trends are presented in Beverage Containers, a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industrial market research firm.

Plastic containers will log the fastest gains as they continue to supplant metal, glass and paperboard containers across a range of applications. Demand will rise over six percent annually through 2003 to 55 billion units using 5.6 billion pounds of resin, propelled by rising demand for larger single-serving plastic bottles. Advances in barrier properties and production techniques will also allow plastics to compete in increasingly smaller serving sizes, while simultaneously opening novel applications ranging from hot-fill teas and juices to malt beverages.

Metal cans will continue to account for roughly half of the beverage container market in unit terms, based on the popularity of can multipacks and cans' traditional strength in the sizable beer and soft drink markets and the vending channel. However, cans will continue to lose ground to glass and/or plastics in all of their traditional strongholds. In the bedrock soft drink market, for example, cans' share of volume has now fallen below 50 percent.

Prospects will improve somewhat for glass bottles, as their replacement in the soft drink and milk markets has been largely completed and the loss of share to plastics is slowing in applications like bottled water and distilled spirits as well. Prospects will be best in relatively novel niche markets like ready-to-drink coffees and nutraceutical beverages. Paperboard containers will continue to fare well in full strength fruit beverages and bulk wines, and new applications are opening for aseptic packaging in the alternative beverage market. Still, opportunities will be constrained by the ongoing decline of the frozen juice concentrate segment and the loss of market share to plastics in milk packaging.

Carbonated soft drinks will remain the largest single market for beverage containers, with a share approaching 50 percent. Beer will remain the second largest market, accounting for one fourth of total demand, while fruit juices and drinks are expected to supplant milk as the third largest container market. However, smaller markets - which encompass the so-called "alternative" beverages - will generally log faster gains. These include isotonic sports drinks, ready-to-drink iced tea and coffee, and bottled waters.

Beverage Containers (published 7/99, 214 pages) is available for $3500 from The Freedonia Group, Inc., 767 Beta Drive, Cleveland, OH 44143-2326. For further details, please contact Corinne Gangloff by phone 440.684.9600, fax 646.0484 or e-mail Full text is also available online through commercial database companies and the Web site.

Please attribute information from this news release to The Freedonia Group (Cleveland, OH) and include, if possible, the price of the report. We would also appreciate a copy of the article or publication in which we appear.
COPYRIGHT 1999 Subscription: $00.00 per year as of 1/94. Published irregularly. Contact Freedonia Group, 3570 Warrensville Cente
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1999 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Comment:US demand for beverage containers is projected to advance at an annual pace of 2.2 percent through the year 2003 to 217 billion units.
Publication:Research Studies - Freedonia Group
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jul 1, 1999
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