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'Stellar' year for packaging machinery shipments

U.S. packaging machinery shipments surged 9.3% to an estimated $5.344 billion last year according to the Packaging Machinery Manufacturers Institute’s 11th annual Shipments and Outlook Study.
FILED IN:  Machinery  > Filling/sealing  > Capping

The increase was the largest percentage jump since 1995’s 10.9% gain. Canadian packaging machinery shipments meanwhile climbed 8.8% in 2004 to an estimated C$420.6 million (US$323.7 million).

All 17 U.S. equipment categories PMMI tracks showed growth with double-digit increases in seven of them: converting (24.6%) skin and blister (23.8%) filling—liquid products (22.8%) labeling (22%) capping overcapping lidding sealing (13.8%) form/fill/seal bag/pouch (11.1%) and palletizing depalletizing and pallet unitizing (11.1%).

U.S. domestic shipments rose by $336 million (8.5%) to $4.273 billion. Exports added $119 million (12.5%) to $1.071 billion marking the first time U.S. exports have topped $1 billion.

Food beverage and pharmaceutical/medical product packaging applications accounted for 72.6% of 2004 shipments up from 67.7% the previous year.

Looking forward the study forecasts 3.8% annual growth to $5.982 billion in 2007. The three machine categories predicted to lead that growth are the following: coding dating printing marking stamping and imprinting (7.6% forecasted annual growth rate); labeling (6.1%); and skin and blister packing (4.7%). The complete study is available for $2 (nonmember price) by contacting Paula Feldman at 703/243-8555 or by e-mail at

—Jim Butschli

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