Industry experts feel retail-ready packaging (RRP)
is growing strong and will likely continue to do so in the next few years, as suppliers are slowly but surely adapting to new technologies. But, although there are no signs of a slow-down so far, the future of the RRP sector is in fact not without challenges
due to misleading claims concerning the sustainability of corrugated materials.
Retail-ready packaging is on a roll
As consumers are increasingly time-pressed and the retail landscape is becoming more and more competitive, the fight between brands to stand out on the shelf
continues to boost the RRP industry. Even retailers who wouldn’t have dreamt of utilizing retail-ready packaging are increasingly exploring the format to make their products top of mind with consumers browsing the shopping aisles.
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“We’re seeing more categories utilising RRP than ever before and more retailers that traditionally didn’t use RRP introducing it on shelf. Businesses now take RRP more seriously. For retailers it helps to increase in-store efficiencies, improve product availability
and generate sales. For brands, [it] is part of the marketing mix,” says Chris Murray
, Managing Director of DS Smith UK Packaging.
Seizing new opportunities
As short runs are becoming the new norm while the RRP industry has traditionally relied on analogue, suppliers are increasingly adopting digital printing solutions
for corrugated. Murray is not surprised, as this opens up plenty of creative opportunities:
“Technology is an opportunity. Digital print enables brands to do things they weren’t able to do before, such as individual printing, bespoke coding and shorter print runs.”
Bringing the sustainability message across
While corrugated is made from recycled fibers, is fully recyclable and increasingly popular with retailers as well as consumers, RRP experts feel the industry needs to do more to raise consumer awareness
in the sustainability
department. Apparently, part of the public perceives the RRP industry as a waste creator rather than a reducer, according to Nick Kirby, CEO of Swanline Print Group: “We need to further educate consumers that corrugated packaging can be recycled multiple times
. Printing recycled logos on all corrugated packaging would make for a great start.”
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