Is Paper A More Sustainable Flexible Packaging Material Than Plastic?

POSTED: 25th Aug

Wood Mackenzie’s global flexible packaging market analysis puts the market size for converter supplied flexible packaging at roughly $90 billion in 2018 and $93 billion in 2019. Plastic-based value-added flexible packaging, i.e. converter supplied, accounts for roughly 93% of total consumption, compared to paper/board-based flexible packaging which accounts for about 5%.

Consumers today widely view paper as a more environmentally friendly alternative to plastic. A European consumer preferences survey, commissioned by Two Sides in 2020, concluded that 62% of consumers see paper and cardboard packaging as better for the environment. Additionally, 70% of consumers surveyed said they were actively taking steps to reduce their use of plastic packaging.

Plastic film suppliers and converters are increasingly focusing on sustainable solutions and working towards changing negative public perception. In recent years, there have been efforts to promote more sustainable plastic-based flexible packaging. These include solutions that use a higher percentage of recycled materials all the way through to optimising design for recyclability.  The way forward for the flexible packaging industry is to introduce better recycling systems, more recycling-friendly flexible packaging solutions, smaller amounts of substrate per package and a stricter focus on creating a circular economy.

Read the full article from Forbes here.

Sign up for news updates


With the success of Propak West Africa 2021 marking our biggest and best edition to date, we are already preparing for the 2022 edition - and this is going to be even bigger! Get in touch now to secure the best stand at the exhibition.

Book a stand