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European Packaging Institute (EPI)
Report, News, Notifications - English Edition 2/2006

Significant Increase in Packaging Usage - a Prognosis

The world packaging market is presently growing at a rate of 4.2 % per annum. This is revealed in a study by the British Packaging Institute PIRA, according to which the total global turnover is expected to reach US Dollar 556 billion by the year 2009. The largest share of the world usage is taken by packaging materials made of paper, cardboard and board. The world usage of these packaging materials has already reached a value of US Dollar 176 billion.

According to the study plastic packaging materials are expected to reach a growth rate of 6.5 % in the coming years. The food industry has a high proportion of the increasing use of plastic packaging. The packaging usage in Asia is growing disproportionately, at an annual rate of 14.2 % in India alone and 8.2 % in China.
In Europe the growth region for packaging usage is Eastern Europe. For Poland, with an annual growth rate for packaging usage of 11 %, a turnover of US Dollar 6 billion is predicted by the year 2009. For Russia the prognosis is for a turnover in packaging materials of US Dollar 18.5 billion.

Worldwide Evaluation of the Product Information on Packaging

The importance for consumers of information printed on the packaging about the food products within has been revealed in a worldwide study by the market survey company AC Nielsen. Within the survey 21,000 consumers were questioned. It was identified that only 40 % of those questioned were interested in the nutritional information when purchasing a product for the first time. In Germany 48 % of consumers looked at the fat content and 36 % at the additive content. In Austria these figures were
46 % and 32 % respectively. Only 18 % of consumers in Europe make any evaluation of product labelling, 50 % of all Europeans only partially understand the information on food labelling.

Current Themes in Packaging Development from the Viewpoint of Research in Scandinavia

Progress in packaging research and development at the Swedish Institutes has been praised in Göteborg's "Svenska Massan". In a report with the question, "Is the Nordic region developing into a world leading packaging centre?", the answer appears to be that institutes in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden are working on research topics that will have great significance for the further development of packaging. Here the research being carried out is very application orientated, focussing on new packaging materials and their manufacturing cost in the interests of reduced packaging prices. At the same time new technical solutions are assessed for their practicality and usage, measured against possible improvements in the package handling. Research into radiofrequency identification (RFID) and traceability is also being carried out. With all the research the highest consideration is given to the fact that with globalisation and product storage in non-European countries the demands on packaging can be expected to constantly rise.

At the Danish Institute for Packaging and Transport Research ( DTI) there is a special expertise in the areas of packaging and logistics for pharmaceutical and food products particularly with regard to RFID research. There is already an RFID Test Centre at the Institute.

At the Swedish Packaging Research Institute (STFI) work is being carried out on new solutions for the whole added value chain. In addition new packaging machine systems and packaging/barrier materials are being devised for the market. Under discussion here are biodegradable materials produced from shrimp shells as well as from whey, as well as adhesives and glues for nanotechnology. The Institute devotes special resource to research into fibres and the printing of packaging materials made of fibres.

The effect on the environment of packaging is the subject of the research by the Finnish Packaging Association. The association has special Know How in this area which extends beyond the current life cycle analysis. From their research can be deduced what very grave effects an insufficient supply of packaging could have, losses of 5 million Euros per annum in Finland and of 3 billion Euros in the whole of Europe.

For the Norwegian Packaging Association an important theme is the consequences and conclusions for packaging development which may arise from trade strategies. Combined with this is the demand for trademarks and the opportunities offered by radiofrequency identification ( RFID). The Association has a RFID Centre for radiofrequency identification research.

New Research Information on the Role of Packaging in Product Quality

The role of packaging in the consumer assessment of product quality of food stuffs and other consumer items is revealed from test reports which were published recently by the Berlin based Consumer Test Foundation in their magazine "Test". The criteria for the tests included the packaging itself and its suitability for purpose, the product declaration, the ease of handling and the environmental aspect of the packaging. The expert bodies, which set the standards for the assessment of product quality, arrived at a figure for frozen gourmet fillet steak as well as soya sauces of a 20 % share in the role played by packaging and the declaration in the quality assessment. In both cases this figure was a 15 % share for the product information displayed on the declaration. With Mozzarella and Christmas Stollen the same 15 % share of quality perception came from the declaration. With vacuum packed or protective gas packed pasta products a 15 % share was credited to the packaging and the declaration, whereby a 10 % share was given to the declaration. With cosmetic products the share for the declaration was between 5 % (eyeliner) and 10 % (face cream with light protection factor). In the tests carried out by the German Packaging Institute e.V. for the purposes of packaging development an overall assessment was established. From these were assessed a 5 % - 30 % role assumed by the packaging in the perception of product quality. Against this figure the share of the packaging costs in relation to the product costs is generally between 0.5 and 10 %

Packaging Forum at the 18th Cadeaux Exhibition

Gift wrapping paper and gift packaging, together with labels and cardboard packaging as well as a large range of other gift wrap related products, were exhibited at the 18th Trade Fair for Gifts and
Ideas for Living, the CADEAUX Exhibition, which was held from the 4th - 6th May 2006 in Leipzig.
At the exhibition were 431 exhibitors from 13 countries. The figure for the same March 2005 exhibition was 427 exhibitors from 11 countries.
In the discussions which were held among the exhibitors attention was drawn to the fact that the development of gift wrapping packaging has now grown to a significant area of packaging design and that the latest developments are inspiring creative ideas for the packaging of everyday products.

New Scenarios for World Energy Usage up to 2050

The Shell Oil Germany GmbH company presented in a lecture conference at the New Leipzig Trade Fair Grounds its latest energy usage prognosis for the periods up to 2025 and 2050. The relevance of the studies which are the basis for the scenarios, is the fact that world energy consumption has climbed more steeply in recent years than had been expected from the economic growth rate. In the years from 2001- 2004 40 % of the increase in oil consumption was due to demand from the Peoples Republic of China. Even as recently as the mid 1990's there was talk of a decoupling of the world economy and energy consumption.

The scenarios presented are based on a clear increase in world energy consumption. The growing energy requirements of several of the larger threshold countries such as China, India and Brazil are the cause of this above average increase in demand. It is reckoned that there will be a doubling of the number of cars in the world by 2030. According to the World Business Council For Sustainable Development it is to be expected that there will be no fewer than 2 billion cars with a world population of 9 billion people. By the year 2075 there could be as many as 10 billion inhabitants in the world.

The assumptions made for the studies include an annual growth rate of 3.5 % over the next 50 years and an increase in per capita income to more than US Dollar 20,000 per annum. A particular problem is that the opening up of new energy reserves is expected to slow down, but that the energy requirements by 2050 are predicted to double or treble over the present energy needs.

Even in the near future it will be necessary to fall back to an ever growing degree on natural gas as an energy provider. It is expected that by 2050 up to 50 % of the primary energy consumption will be covered by renewable energy sources.

TerraTec 2007

The next international Trade Exhibition for Environmental Technology and Environmental Services, TerraTec 2007, will take place in Leipzig from 5th - 8th March 2007. Among the six exhibition areas are included: waste refuse, renewable raw materials and biogenic residues, exhibits in the fields of surveying, planning and inspection. The focus of the exhibition will, among other things, be the transfer of knowledge and technology from Western to Eastern Europe as well as questions relating to waste disposal and recycling, biological processes, and the product characteristics of waste and in addition the results of research and development programmes and future cooperation .

New Directives of the European Union

New European legal directives applying to the manufacture, conversion and use of packaging materials and components, are in force since January 1st 2006. They relate to microbiological criteria as well as to the prevention of harmful substances coming into contact with food products.
Prominent among these are the denoted Directives as "Hygiene package" which have come into effect with the EU Regulation No. 2074/2005 and which apply specifically to food hygiene, animal welfare and the supervision of animal products destined for human consumption. The regulations also cover the requirements for fish products as well as the recognised test methods for tracing marine toxins and extend as far as the requirements for the calcium content of mechanically rendered meat products. The "Hygiene Package" was passed into law on 5th December 2005 ( see ABI. L338 of 22.12.2005, p.27)
Significant is also the latest regulation about the microbiological criteria for foodstuffs: the EU regulation No. 2073/2005 (see ABI. L338 of 22.12.2005, p.1). This Directive replaces a regulation passed in 2004, EU regulation No. 852/2004, and sets down the minimum requirements for microbiological condition. In the Directives the standards are laid down which have to be observed for all meat, dairy, and egg products as well as fruit and vegetables. The importance of monitoring process hygiene on the basis of these criteria derives from the fact that pathogenic organisms are a frequent cause of food poisoning. Packaging materials are possible carriers of such organisms.

EU regulation No. 1895/2005 seeks to prevent the transfer of Epoxybonds in significant quantities into preserved foodstuffs. The legally binding Directive as of 1st January 2006 recognises the fact that Epoxyphenol-Resin-Lacquers are used as internal coatings on tin cans and that these resins, in a reaction with chlorine as it is released from PVC, can become the cause of hydroxyderivatives, a potentially toxic substance. In the meantime research by the European Authority for Food Standards
(EBLS) has established that the cancerous and gene toxic effect is not as significant as was assumed and that a daily intake of 0.15 milligrammes per kilo of bodyweight can be tolerated. It is for this reason that in the latest regulation a maximum value of 9 milligrammes per kilo of product weight is set as the maximum permissible migration value.

Standardisation of the Health Related Information on Foodstuffs Packaging

In conjunction with the aims of the EU Commission to establish a Health Claims regulation there are discussions at the present time about the standardisation of health related information given on foodstuff packaging and in food advertising. According to a report in the magazine "Food in Focus" the information will be based on a listing of all the permissible statements. Similarly there will be the establishment of a list of all the statements which are not allowed. In the evaluation of all the statements and information which are not permitted to be false or misleading, the current state of scientific knowledge will be taken as the basis, and the European Authority for Food Safety will be tasked to check what is recognised as scientific fact. In order to prevent consumers being misled a system of pictures, symbols and graphics will be used in the representation of the product information.

Dictionary of Packaging , German, English, French, Italian, Spanish, Russian, by Erich Krae-mer, 3rd revised Edition, 2005, 1032 pages, hardcover, Euro 178.00, published by Huethig Press Heidelberg.

In business and industry packaging often forms part of contracts and agreements. A specialised dictionary for the packaging industry is therefore not only of great use in information exchange between different countries but also for agreements within international trading arrangements - particularly in the light of developments over the past 20 years. In both these last two decades countless new and further developed packaging materials and components have been used for the manufacture of packaging materials. At the same time new packaging methods have been developed and new designations for existing methods and materials introduced. There has been progress also in the development of new norms in the packaging area, both at European level with EN as well as at international level with ISO Norms. These are significant grounds for a new edition of the specialist Dictionary of Packaging of which the first edition was published in 1968 and the second in 1990.
The author responsible for this work is Erich Kraemer who for many years was active in leading roles in the packaging industry as well as in the packaging rationalisation community of the RKW and in the work of packaging norms. In the dictionary are included, in addition to the basic vocabulary and important packaging terms, the designation of packaging materials, methods and means, as well as those frequently used terms and expressions which do not belong to the packaging vocabulary. The largest section of the technical words in the dictionary, which goes from A to Z, is devoted to packaging materials and methods.

Point for Point. The Dual System from A to Z. Publisher: The Green Dot, Dual System Germany AG. Cologne 2005.

With only 38 pages this booklet is - as the subtitle suggests - an alphabetical reference book for the use of dual systems for the disposal of used packaging materials. Those organisations and arrangements as well as procedures and provisions which are important for dual systems are included. The key words start with the filler - in the context of the dual system this is the manufacturer of the consumer product who uses the Green Dot for his products - and run right through to the contractual agreements for the use of the Green Dot. All the conventional packaging materials such as aluminium, drinks packaging, cardboard, plastics, paper, board, PET , laminated packaging materials and tinplate are represented and featured with articles. Detailed information is given about the Dual System Germany as well as on EU Packaging guidelines, plastic film conversion and the handbook of German packaging regulations.

New Address of the German Packaging Institute e.V.

The joint Office of the German Packaging Institute e.V. (dvi) and of the Association of German Packaging Engineers (bdvi) has moved to a new address in Berlin. The new address is as follows:
Kunzendorfstr. 19, D-14165 Berlin.
The new telephone and fax numbers are as follows:
Tel: +49 (0) 30 8049858-0
Fax: +49 (0) 30 8049858-18

The e-mail address remains as before: info@verpackung.org
The website remains http://www.verpackung.org