The medical packaging films market size is expected to advance at a CAGR of 6.1% during 2024–2030, to reach $11,752.8 million by 2030. This can be ascribed to the high demand for pharmaceuticals and medical devices as a consequence of the rising incidence of chronic diseases and the growing aging population, and the surging demand for sustainable pharmaceutical packaging solutions.
In the medical and pharmaceutical industry, medical packaging films play a crucial role, as these are highly responsible for safe and effective packaging and protecting pharmaceutical products and devices. Some of the types include blister packaging, multi-compartmental trays, individual-wrap packages, water-soluble packaging, pouches, and others. Furthermore, the higher emphasis on extending the shelf life of medical devices and products and abolishing bacterial or viral contamination possibilities have boosted the demand for packaging films in the industry.
While working for people’s well-being, safety, and health, the pharmaceutical packaging industry is also responsible for contributing considerably to GHG emissions, due to the high usage of plastic packaging solutions. Therefore, to cope with negative externalities associated with pharmaceutical production and packaging, the industry is making its way toward introducing green solutions. Thus, companies operating in the sector are focusing on an array of green materials in their product offerings. These green solutions include bioplastics, cardboard, recycled paper, glass, and others. For instance, a sustainable packaging solution provider, Coveris launched recyclable mono-PE film based on mono films for medical packaging in November 2021.
Hence, the increase in the popularity and demand for sustainable bioplastic materials has been driving the market. The usage of bioplastics reduces the impact of bans and decreases the use of polymer plastic-based packaging for medical products, due to sustainability concerns. For instance, according to a European government source, the production of biodegradable plastics, including starch blends PLA, PHA, and others, accounted for more than 50% of the global bioplastics production capacity in 2022.
The pharmaceutical category accounted for the highest revenue share, of 45%, in the medical packaging films market in 2023. Higher the use of pharmaceutical products, the higher the demand for medical packaging materials and solutions, which, in turn, propels the market growth in this category.
Globally, the Asia-Pacific market is expected to expand with the highest growth rate in the coming years. This can be majorly due to the increasing middle-class population, the surging healthcare expenditure coupled with rising disposable income, the availability of innovative medical and pharmaceutical solutions in developing economies such as China, Indonesia, India, and Malaysia, and the thriving pharmaceutical production in the region.
Furthermore, the introduction of innovative packaging solutions is fueling the regional market growth. For instance, in September 2021, Uflex partnered with Mespack and Hoffer Plastics with the aim to develop 100% recyclable hot-fill pouches. These are easily recyclable mono-polymers that come with material-reducing spout caps. These products also offer easy heat seal-ability, improved barrier properties, and longer shelf-life.
The major medical packaging films market players are 3M, Amcor Plc, Covestro AG, DuPont de Nemours Inc., Glenroy Inc., Honeywell International Inc., Klöckner Pentaplast, POLYCINE GmbH, Toray Industries Inc., and RENOLIT SE.