Demand for retail-ready corrugated boxes is projected to increase 5.6 percent per year to $3.3 billion in 2020. Growth will outpace the overall corrugated box average due to continued solid expansion for revenues and store units among retailers that require RRP, specifically club stores and limited assortment deep discount grocery stores. Additionally, gains will reflect the presence of value added features on retail ready corrugated boxes, particularly high quality graphics and customization of box design. These and other trends are presented in "Retail-Ready Packaging," a new study from The Freedonia Group, a Cleveland-based industry research firm.

The largest markets for retail ready corrugated boxes in 2015 were produce; meat, poultry, and seafood; canned food; nonfood; and beverages, which represented a combined 58 percent of total retail ready corrugated box demand. Among these leading markets, the nonfood market will experience the fastest growth due to a healthy outlook for club stores, which carry large selections of consumer nondurables such as toiletries, over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, cleaning products, and paper goods.

Among the remaining retail ready packaging markets for corrugated boxes, snack food will experience the fastest growth through 2020, driven to some extent by trends such as snacks in place of complete meals and the growing prominence of nuts as a protein-rich snack. This will fuel a flurry of new product introductions of snack foods, including line extensions; products in nontraditional flavors and mixes of sweet and savory flavors; products in smaller sizes or unique shapes; and products that present a more favorable nutritional profile or that are gluten-free.