When it comes to packaging and other works, plastics have increasingly become the materials of choice, owing to the ability to customize the properties of the polymerization process and therefore, getting the exact outcomes as needed. Due to the fact that plastics are normally very unreactive, they are preferred for bottling and packing. Plastics are also widely used with or as an alternative to industrial automobile rubber parts.
Plastics Market Projected Growth
The market has been poised to grow at a rate of 5% this year and end at $5.4 billion by 2017. Demands for flexible plastics are on the rise, and these plastics are mainly asked for by the food industries. Here are some of the trends that can be predicted for 2016 in the plastic industry:
- Cans: Plastics has been shown to be very good replacements to the metal cans. They are easier to produce and much cheaper. And, of late, the switch to plastics has been shown to be very much possible, through the use of blowmolding and PET. Metals, which were once used as barriers for oxygen to prevent the contents from oxidizing, could soon see phasing out with the increased adoption of plastics for this purpose. There have been innovations such as the Milacron’s Klear Can Technology, which uses the same bending and seaming technologies as is used in metal cans, and thus, immediate investments would not be too high.
- Intelligent packaging: These days, to prevent counterfeiting of the goods and packaging itself, the manufacturers have increasingly adopted the use of technologies to help the users track and trace the genuineness of the product. The use of QR code/barcode has been prevalent, and this trend is poised to only grow in 2016.
- Lightweight plastics: There has been a remarkable breakthrough in the field of lightweight plastics over the years. Since the plastics that are lightweight are also strong enough, they have gained a lot of traction in the market over the years. Plastic resins and additives are being used for this purpose. These are mainly used in automobile industries at the moment, and are increasingly passing the durability tests, over the period of the developments.
- Near-shoring: It has been a matter of debate, and one side has been seemingly winning recently. It has been seen that producing plastics near the places where it is used the most is the better way, and keeps the prices low and margins higher. 2016 is going to be a further step in bringing plastic industries a step closer to the target market. This can allow companies to respond quickly to the needs of the industries, and design more efficient techniques that would be customized to the needs of the target industry.
- Reclaiming, Recycling, Renewing: Sustainability is the new buzzword, and renewable plastics have become the latest trend. Bio-based plastics, that do not depend on biofuels are being developed and are touted to be the next big thing. Composite materials made from soybean and flax have been shown to be very usable in a large number of circumstances. The huge mounds of plastics that are lying around in the wastelands and in the oceans, are striking reminders that renewable plastics are very important, and 2016 will see further developments in this field.
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