Packaging print opportunity in shipping crisis

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The ongoing shipping crisis is causing an increasing number of Australian companies to look at sourcing packaging locally, as importing from China becomes more costly and takes longer.

Local carton opportunity: shipping crisis
Local carton opportunity: shipping crisis

CEO of freight forwarding company, Verus Global, Jackson Meyer says there are major issues with the supply chain at the moment, with Australia at “the bottom of the pecking order” and 600,000 shipping container slots withdrawn in Australia, with the lucrative trade in the US being prioritised.

He said: “For many Australian businesses importing from China is no longer a feasible option, and does not provide a reliable ETA.”

Tony Bertrand, marketing manager at Ball & Doggett, the country’s largest supplier of printable media said, “No doubt there is opportunity for locally produced packaging. Freight costs from Asia are higher, increasing, and won’t go down. While retail for instance is still hamstrung by the lockdowns it will bounce back. Those retailers will need packaging, and the upside of the global shipping situation is local opportunity, particularly in packaging manufacture.”

One of those printers aiming to capitalise on the oppotrtunity is global digital flexible packaging producer ePac, which will be opening up a new plant in Australa by the end of the year, and is anticipating bringing a lot of work into it back from overseas. Jason Brown, managing director of the new plant, said the new ePac plant "will see the return of a fair amount of work" that is currently sourced from China. He said, “With turnaround of one to two weeks ePac clients will have no supply chain issues, and will be able to respond to market demand much quicker than they can at present.”

Freight boss Meyer says that there is "no end in sight" to the shipping pressures, and that consumers will feel the effects across not only the food and beverage industry, but also across the fuel, retail, and homewares industries.

He said, “The GDP in the US is astronomical, and the shipping market is feeling the impact of US congestion on the industry - and as a result this directly affects businesses, who then will pass on costs to the consumers. For consumers, the cost of goods has risen dramatically thanks to a global shortage of shipping containers and the pandemic - and unfortunately this will continue to rise,” explains Meyer.



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