While the packaging market is growing dynamically due to the demand for packaging linked to the increase in consumption generated by the global population growth, Ana Blanquart, managing director of Exprimo Adria, a leading Croatian packaging technology company in the region, believes that extruded plastic films, which can be used to form large products and protect them from the sun, can also create significant value in industry and agriculture.
– Exprimo Adria is a second-generation family company that my father founded because he recognised that film could create a whole new situation in the construction scaffolding industry. Which minimises the risk of delays in construction by guaranteeing a safe working environment, whatever the weather conditions. Not to mention the fact that this solution, whether transparent or coloured, is not only aesthetically pleasing, but also promotes sustainability by maximising the reduction of air pollution associated with construction works. For example, it prevents the release of pollutants into the environment during sandblasting and spray painting,” explains Ana Blanquart.
The global take-up of perfectly mouldable extruded plastics is illustrated by the fact that, while the sector achieved a turnover of $185.6 billion in 2020, industry forecasts predict that, with an average annual growth rate of 4.6 percent, it will reach $289.2 billion by 2030. If only because it is a product with a very wide range of uses.
Not to mention the fact that the growth of the global population is also playing a major role in the advance of extruded plastics, already widely used in the construction, packaging and automotive industries, for example for pipes, films and components. The growing number of people on the planet has dramatically increased the demand for consumer goods, which has also led to a significant increase in packaging demand.
As an illustrative example, while packaging industry turnover was close to $920 billion in 2019, growing at 2.8 percent per year, it could exceed $1 billion by 2024.
Exprimo Adria is finding that one of the drivers of this growth is clearly the increase in demand for extruded plastic packaging materials that are easy to form for universal use, from food packaging to e-commerce products and industrial applications. Highlighting that while there is still a basic preconception that film is polluting, with today’s technological advances this is no longer necessarily the case.
– When it comes to sustainability, the most important thing to know when you buy is that there are extrusion companies that use additives or reprocessed resins in their plastic shrink films. This is of course to reduce their costs. But there is a serious price to pay on the consumer side, because they are changing the quality and the efficiency of the shrink film application to a large extent. Therefore, if sustainability is an important consideration, we can certainly reduce our environmental impact if we are sure that the shrink film we buy is made from 100% virgin raw materials.
Exprimo Adria also uses only industry-leading Dr. Shrink shrink films, which are made from 100% virgin resin and contain maximum UV protection, to ensure that the items we wrap are protected during long-term storage and transport.
But we also consider it equally important that this film is 100 per cent recyclable,” says the company manager, who believes that as Hungarian market players are also beginning to recognise the potential of film, they can also benefit from the fact that the entry of Croatia into the euro zone will minimise exchange rate risks for Hungarian companies trading in euros.
Zoltan M. Ersek