A recent Freedonia Group analysis shows retail-ready boxes to be one of the fastest-growing packaging options used in the fresh produce industry through 2024, with the largest increases within the fresh vegetable and salad packaging market.
Though traditional corrugated boxes will remain the dominant type used in fresh vegetable and salad applications, retail-ready boxes continue to increase their share based on added convenience.
Four key produce applications where the use of these boxes is growing are tomatoes, salads, potatoes and smaller volume vegetables.
Tomatoes will by far remain the largest area for retail-ready boxes used in fresh vegetable applications and comprise the largest single share of sales gains through 2024, growing five percent annually.
This is because with retail-ready boxes the tomato is showcased and they feature attractive graphics, according to the study.
Although much smaller than the tomato market, salad will remain in second place for retail-ready boxes, with 5.5 percent annual growth anticipated through 2024.
Also from a small base compared to tomatoes, demand for retail-ready boxes in the potato packaging market is forecast to rise 5.4 percent per year through 2024. Use of these boxes is expected to expand for both loose and bagged potatoes.
The fastest-growing demand for this type of box is expected for carrots, mushrooms, onions and smaller volume vegetables such as sweet potatoes.
Though from small bases, retail-ready box sales in these areas are projected to exceed six percent annually through 2024, with double-digit percentage growth expected for mushrooms.