Packaging can be an important, yet difficult decision for beverage-makers. In this month’s category focus article about kids drinks, Sarah Theodore, global drinks analyst for Mintel Food & Drink, Chicago, notes that the kids market has been a little bit slow to embrace packaging innovation, but is starting to pick up steam. However, resealable pouch packages, the benefits of which include on-the-go convenience, have begun to catch on in the category, she says.

In a Euromonitor International video blog, “New Applications for PET Packaging,” Regina Maiseviciute, packaging research analyst at Chicago-based Euromonitor, mentions that PET packaging performed well globally from 2005 to 2010, which was driven by dairy as well as fruit and vegetable juices. Those categories provided new consumption opportunities as well as showcased lightweight convenience and innovation for PET plastic, she says.

Maiseviciute also notes that a large amount of volume of PET is in beverages, particularly soft drinks, she says. But PET is making steps into the alcohol drinks segment with spirits and wine as well as beer, particularly at events where glass is banned, she adds.

The United States leads PET volume consumption, but the strongest forecast is in India where plastic packaging will be used in urban areas to offer clean, safe drinking water, Maiseviciute says. 

Another aspect of packaging for beverage-makers to consider is over-packaging. Three-quarters of Americans believe that many consumer products are over-packaged, according to a survey of lifestyle of health and sustainability (LOHAS) consumers conducted by the Natural Marketing Institute (NMI), Harleysville, Pa.

Companies can attract new consumers by using less packaging and “greener” materials, such as renewable and plant-based materials, said Steve French, managing partner of NMI, in a statement.