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Packaging offers rich pickings for automation

01 February, 2006

The European packaging machinery market is growing at a CAGR of nearly 5%, and its total sales will exceed €15.6bn by 2009, according to a new report from the market analyst, IMS Research.

Automation vendors stand to benefit handsomely from this growth. "Packaging machinery is a particularly attractive market for automation component suppliers as the automation content of a machine typically accounts for about 15-20% of the total machine cost," explains IMS senior analyst, Tim Dawson.

"Not only is the packaging machinery market itself experiencing growth, but the amount of automation equipment being used by machine-builders is also increasing as companies integrate more robotics, servo motors and control equipment to increase machine flexibility and productivity," he adds.

Increased automation expenditure is allowing users to replace often obsolete mechanical systems. This increases the reliability of machinery, cuts downtime and often reduces labour costs. Machine vision is also replacing costly manual inspection, where mistakes are common, IMS says.

The report analyses seven different types of packaging machinery and finds that filling and dosing machinery is the largest segment, accounting for more than 20% of revenues. This type of machine also offers the biggest opportunity for automation component suppliers.

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