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Global Paper Cups Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2021 - 2026)

Global Paper Cups Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2021 - 2026)

  • November 2021
  • 164 pages
  • ID: 6187422
  • Format: PDF
  • Mordor Intelligence LLP


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The Paper Cups Market was valued at USD 10.03 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach USD 13.80 billion by 2026, registering a CAGR of 3.64% during the period 2021-2026. The pandemic has hit quick-service restaurants hard. Many cafes and restaurants have shifted towards carry-out only or curbside pick-up. Some limited their in-store capacity and implemented creative delivery services to ensure food delivery during the lockdowns. This is expected to create significant demand for paper cups solutions across the food and beverage industry. In a few places, due to the pandemic, the ban on single-use plastics has been temporarily lifted, as consumers are reluctant towards reusable packaging products due to the threats of infection. Hence, paper is considered crucial as the world went to lockdowns to help limit the spread of the coronavirus. This is primarily because the paper is considered a viable packaging product due to the increasing demand for hygiene products.

Key Highlights
Paper cups have gained wide acceptance owing to their significant properties, such as easy-to-use, hygienic, safe, and other functionality. They also meet the needs of modern life cost-effectively. According to the Green match 2021, 16 billion paper cups are used for coffee every single year.
According to the Paper Cup Alliance, 2.5 billion cups are sold in the United Kingdom’s high streets every year. Also, according to the paper and recycling sector estimates, 50 billion cups are used annually in the United States.
Moreover, the increasing penetration of coffee chains, such as Starbucks, Costa Coffee, and Tim Hortons, across global is the most significant growth driver for the market studied. According to Good News Network studies, each year, Starbuck uses 250 billion to-go cups that serve coffee and tea, the majority of which are paper-based.
Majorly catered by the Food Service Industry globally, the rising trend of takeaways amid the COVID-19 led movement restrictions have generated the need for paper cups. According to US Census Bureau, more than 225 million customers in the United States, one of the leading fast-food markets globally, are anticipated to use disposable cups by 2023.
Further indications such as the growing demand for short-run custom printed cups are majorly being used by standalone coffee and ice cream shops that need greater volumes and fast deliveries.
Biodegradable cups, which are made from a water-soluble coating, help in easy disposal and can be recycled effectively. To increase its application in the food and beverage industry, various manufacturers are improving their biodegradable cups with some value-added features such as heat resistance for oven applications, heat sealing, or water-based elements that pose no risk for human health.
In early 2020, the Global Approach track in India produced bio-degradable, disposable paper cups. The company currently produces paper cups in two different sizes, which can be biodegraded, and they are planning to introduce more variety of sizes in the near future. The companies Biodegradable coffee cups are made from renewable natural plant fiber, such as sugarcane or wood. The liner is comprised of PLA, a biodegradable and non-toxic natural maize resin.

Key Market Trends

Starch-Based Plastics are expacted to hold the major market share

As the name implies, starch-based plastics are made from starch, a cheap biopolymer that is completely biodegradable due to its low density. Starch can be found in various sources of cereals, tubers, and roots, such as potatoes, rice, corn, wheat, yam, cassava, and taro, and can be blended with other polymers to produce composites with tailored properties. Bio-degradable plastics such as this help avoid the plastic apocalypse.
According to the UN Environment, the world currently produces about 300 million metric tons of plastic waste every year. The increase in R&D activities that target enhanced materialFor instance, in June 2021, Südzucker announced funding from the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture. Südzucker has been developing plastic films using starch-based renewable raw materials to make starch-based plastic AGENACOMP from the Austrian subsidiary AGRANA Beteiligungs to enhance biodegradability packaging solutions and make them home-compostable.
Südzucker is also participating in another bioplastics project in Straubing, funded by the Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs, Regional Development, and Energy. Vegetable bags previously made entirely from fossil raw materials were replaced in several supermarkets in the region by vegetable bags made primarily from renewable raw materials such as starch.
Similarly, endeavors have been rampant in upcycling excess algae. Algae has been studied to contain cellulose which a few plastic technology specialists have been looking to exploit. In November 2021, UK-based Symphony Environmental collaborated with Eranova to create a “smart plastic” bag using upcycled green algae. Eranova extracts starch from the algae to produce a biodegradable and compostable resin used to manufacture packaging materials. Meanwhile, by-products such as biomass are used as biofuel or animal protein intake or by the pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries.
A Gurgaon-based company has also managed to pioneer the Indian biopolymer landscape with a bioplastic derived from compostable corn starch, called Dr. Bio. The plant-based biopolymer received approval from the Institute of Petrochemicals Technology in the country in September 2021, allowing it to replace single-use plastic use cases, such as drinking straws, bottles, cups, disposable cutlery, and polybags. The company has managed to establish a 250,000 sq ft manufacturing facility in Ludhiana to support its operations in the commercial biopolymer market.

Asia Pacific to be the Fastest Growing Market for Paper Cups

Packaging demand for paper cups in the region dominates firstly due to the comparative population and secondly because of away from home consumption rising across Central and Southeastern Asia.
For instance, according to data published by Vietnam Pulp and Paper Association (VPPA), the consumption of paper for packaging in the country during the month of May 2021 stood at 404,711 tons, which was slightly down (4%) compared to the previous month.
Various paper Cups packaging vendors operating in the region are optimistic about their prospects in 2021 and the following years, owing to Vietnam’s stable business situation. Moreover, according to SSI Securities Joint Stock Company, in Vietnam, the consumption of paper packaging is expected to increase by 12% during the forecast period due to continuing urbanization. These are the positive aspects that let the paper cup packaging grow.
As per the World Bank data, around 35% of India’s entire population will live in cities by 2020. The demand for paper cups in India would be driven by rising urbanization and the increased use of paper cups in quick-service restaurants for providing cold beverages.
In the region, QSRs have been aligned to fuel demand for paper cups; for instance, Starbucks debuted a new line of environmentally friendly packaging, including coffee ground straws and reusable cold beverage paper cups. In the coming years, such initiatives to promote recyclable and reusable paper cups will increase market growth.
Starting from January 2021, the Chinese government prohibited the use of single-use and non-biodegradable plastics in eateries. The move is intended to encourage the usage of environmentally friendly products and lifestyles. The government is also making investments in paper recycling. These factors are formulating a promising and innovative market for paper cups.

Competitive Landscape

The competitive landscape of the market is becoming increasingly fragmented, leading due to the entry of several small players in the emerging markets. In the developed economies, though, the market remains relatively consolidated as compared to developing economies. Some of the recent developments in the market are as follows: -

May 2021- Graphic Packaging Holding Company stated that its successful partnership with International Paper Company came to an end. International Paper’s membership interests in Graphic Packaging International’s partners were exchanged for an equal number of shares of Graphic Packaging’s common stock in the last installment. As a result, Graphic Packaging owns the partnership entirely.
Dec 2020- BrandBase created the Jungle Cup, the world’s first plastic-free disposable coffee cup that biodegrades in 12 weeks without the use of industrial processing. The Jungle Cup is named for the fact that for every cup sold, enough money is contributed to the Rainforest Trust, an international conservation group, to protect 1 hectare of threatened rainforest.

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