Industrial packaging trends in 2021

2021 will be a key year for the industrial packaging sector, marked by a growing demand for sustainable packaging, by global policies towards a circular economy, and by the application of technology to packaging.

At DS Smith we know that industrial packaging is a vital tool for companies, both for moving goods and for storing them. That is why our experts have analyzed the trends that will shape packaging this year. 

Sustainable industrial packaging

Reducing the ecological gap is one of the points to take into account for brands. The growing concern of consumers about the environment and the regulatory pressure within the framework of sustainability, is leading brands to reflect on their products and the entire supply chain.

These new trends are forcing the use of recycled and recyclable materials - such as corrugated or laminated cardboard -, reusable - such as cardboard, plastic or metal - or from the chain of custody - such as wooden packaging -, among others.


That is why at DS Smith Tecnicarton we continue to focus on providing sustainable solutions that, in turn, optimize our customers' overall supply chain costs and perfectly protect their products. In addition, with our new Now and Next sustainability strategy, we are committed to protecting natural resources by making the most of every fiber and reducing waste and pollution through circular solutions, as well as equipping people to lead the transition to a circular economy.

Smart packaging

The future is technological. It seems impossible to imagine a world where technology does not occupy a privileged place and, in the industrial packaging sector, it was not going to be less. The integration of technology into packaging has given rise to smart packaging.

One of the most popular examples of smart packaging at an industrial level is in the food sector, where thermal labels are attached to packaging to identify, for example, whether the cold chain has been broken during the transfer or storage of the item.

Another example is the inclusion of RFID systems, a technology that allows, through chips, to remotely identify the object in which it is placed by means of a radio signal. Thanks to this, the distribution of goods is facilitated and greater precision in storage management is achieved.


As we can see, intelligent packaging is very useful to have a better control of the goods and facilitates their monitoring, since the information they provide allows us to make better decisions on their management, greater traceability or detect handling errors.