Polyethylene is a major component of many packing products' builds, used in plastic bags, films and containers, and recent reports suggest those trends are only expected to continue growing.
Consumption of the material to grow because of high barrier stretch film demand. Many companies are increasingly looking for this type of packaging product because it increases product shelf life, rids many products of harmful bacteria and enhances the flavor of many foods. It's also growing in demand due to products being moved from rigid containers to high-quality flexible packaging sources.
Of the different types of the packing product, high-density versions are gaining the most market share. This is because they are more opaque and harder, and better able to withstand higher temperatures. These types are also more versatile than otherwise expected, with diverse applications that are ranging from household goods to cosmetics and bottles. The demand of this market is further expected to grow at an annual rate of 7.3 percent through 2020.
Low-density polyethylene is also seeing some market demand in food packaging and similar concerns. It has been affected by the economic downturn, however, which has limited demand in some ways. The market is still expected to grow at a rate of up to 8.2 percent by 2018, however.
Recyclable versions of polyethylene are also growing in popularity. Specifically, a recent contest held by FedEx's Korean division gave the company an opportunity to mention its new XL packaging was made of the material, which contained a minimum amount of 15 percent post-industrial recycled content. This means that in the future, more sustainable versions of the material will further help companies improve their yields.