Global demand for bulk packaging drums is projected to increase 4.6% annually to $11.0 billion in 2021. Sustained growth in output of chemical products – particularly in fast-growing markets such as China, India, Indonesia, and Vietnam – will boost demand for drums. These and other trends are presented in “Global Bulk Packaging, 3rd Edition,” a new study from The Freedonia Group (freedoniagroup.com), a Cleveland-based industry research firm.
Despite a generally favorable outlook as the global economy continues to expand, prospects for drums will be tempered by competition from larger-capacity IBCs, with fibre drums in particular expected to lose share both to other drum types and to alternative packaging formats. Still, drums will remain widely used due to their relatively low cost, reusability, and a good reputation for safety in the transport of hazardous materials. Steel drums will continue to account for the largest share of the global drum market. However, plastic drums will experience the fastest growth through 2021.
In general, greater interest in reusable packaging will continue to benefit steel and plastic drums – and, in some cases, fibre drums – with many firms emphasizing drum reconditioning, fleet management, and other services to increase their competitiveness with larger-capacity, reusable RIBCs.
Global demand for all types of bulk packaging is projected to increase 4.1% per year to $65.5 billion in 2021. Advances will be somewhat faster than those seen in the previous 10 years, despite decelerating growth in the Asia/Pacific region. Gains in the Asia/Pacific region will still be above the global pace, despite a slowdown in the large Chinese market.