Demand for active and intelligent packaging is forecast to climb 8% annually to $2.3 billion in 2015, significantly outpacing overall packaging demand.  Advances will be driven by the availability of products with more reasonable price points and those offering enhanced shelf life and/or improved quality.  Additionally, gains will be supported by new mandates aimed at improving food safety and by the leveraging of smartphone applications to bring interactivity to packaging.  These and other trends are presented inActive & Intelligent Packaging, a new study fromThe Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industry market research firm.

Demand for intelligent packaging is expected to expand at nearly 20% annually to $370 million in 2015, propelled by rapid growth for Quick Response (QR) and other two-dimensional (2-D) barcodes.  Demand will also be fueled by greater use of time-temperature indicator (TTI) labels and tags due to the increased presence of temperature-sensitive drugs and new regulations calling for increased track and trace capabilities with perishable foods. 

Demand for active packaging is projected to increase 6.5% per year to $1.9 billion in 2015.  Gains will be driven by above-average advances for gas scavengers, the result of expanded applications for oxygen scavengers in food, beverage and pharmaceutical packaging.  Additionally, growth will be propelled by solid prospects for susceptor packaging in applications other than microwave popcorn and robust increases for self-venting packaging. 

Food and beverages were the two largest markets for active and intelligent packaging in 2010.  Above-average gains in food uses will be based on heightened requirements for longer shelf life for processed foods and packaged fresh foods containing fewer or no preservatives.  Moreover, opportunities will reflect the need for enhanced tracking and tracing capabilities with perishables in light of the passage of the Food Safety Modernization Act of January 2011.