The market for flexographic ink is expected to register a CAGR of about 5 % globally during the forecast period. Increasing demand for UV-curable inks, along with the growing demand from the packaging industry, are driving the market growth. On the flip side, environmental restrictions for solvent-based inks and unfavorable conditions arising due to the COVID-19 outbreak are hindering the growth of the market.
- The flexographic ink market is expected to grow during the forecast period, owing to the increasing demand from the packaging industry.
- The Asia-Pacific region represents the largest market and is also expected to be the fastest-growing market over the forecast period, owing to the increasing consumption from countries, such as China, India, and Japan.
Key Market Trends
Increasing Demand from the Packaging Industry
- Flexographic inks are widely used in the packaging industry, owing to their low viscosity, ease of printing, and is expected to grow rapidly during the forecast period.
- Water-based inks use water-soluble compounds as the binder to reduce the emission of volatile organic compounds. They eliminate the harm of some toxic substances from coming in contact with the packed food and avoid contamination. Water-based ink printing is of low cost and does not need viscosity control equipment for application.
- UV-curable inks cure only when exposed to UV light of very high intensity. They can be left on the press and hence saves cleaning expenses, as well as leaving the print station ready to print. They need no modifications before going on the press and can be printed at the same level of viscosity.
- The development of polymer printing plates along with plate processing enabled flexographic printers to compete on quality with other techniques. In food packaging, they are used for printing of foils, flexible films, tissues, and wrapping papers, as well as in flexible packaging they are used for printing on paper and plastics bags. Moreover, in corrugated packaging, they make colors look vibrant and prevent rub-off.
- The increase in demand for flexographic inks for printing in the packaging industry is expected to drive the market during the forecast period.
Asia-Pacific Region to Dominate the Market
- The Asia-Pacific region is expected to dominate the market for flexographic ink during the forecast period as a result of the increase in demand from the packaging industry in countries, like India and China.
- Flexographic inks are widely used in the packaging industry. Quality, attention to detail, and aesthetics of the packing are very important in the packaging industry as they attract customers.
- The growing demand for e-commerce in China and India is expected to drive the market for flexographic ink during the forecast period. China’s e-commerce market is dominated by Alibaba, whose market share is around 59%. The company’s annual revenue in FY 2019 has seen 51% year-on-year growth, and the growing e-commerce industry that relies on the packaging is expected to drive the market during the forecast period.
- The Indian e-commerce industry is expected to reach USD 120 billion by 2020. The increase in penetration of the internet and the change in government policies allowing 100% foreign direct investments in the e-commerce sector is expected to boost the market.
- India’s packaging industry is the fifth-largest in the world and is growing at about 22-25% per year as per the Plastics Industry Association of India. Costs of packaging and processes food can be 40% lower than Europe because of highly skilled labor and cheap labor costs. The growing demand for food packaging, processed food, and food delivery partners in the countries is likely to boost the market for flexographic inks.
- The aforementioned factors, coupled with government support, are contributing to the increasing demand for flexographic ink in the Asia-Pacific region during the forecast period.
The global flexographic ink market is partially fragmented with players accounting for a marginal share of the market. Few companies include DIC CORPORATION, INX International Ink Co., Solar Inks Ltd, Antonine Printing Inks Ltd, and Kao Chimigraf.
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