An improved economic performance in the region, compounded by an increasingly sophisticated consumer and a higher purchasing power, has shaped the direction of the packaging market in Mexico, resulting in the emergence of higher quality packaging, offering convenience and visual appeal. Mexico is currently the 11th most populated country in the world and general demand is growing accordingly. Also, 75% of all finished products in Mexico require packaging; of these, 90% are in the food and drinks category
Packaging opportunities in Mexico
The rapid increase in certain consumption trends in Mexico is boosting the need for dynamic and
Consumer trends in Mexico are moving rapidly in terms of new products that match new
worldwide life styles. The Mexican packaging market is very dynamic. The leading sectors are
food processing and beverages. With its high volume population and increasing purchasing
power the food sector keeps on growing steadily and its packaging needs along with it. The
pharmaceutical industry and the toiletries/consumer goods industry are just behind and pushing
strong for their packaging needs.
An improved economic performance in the region, compounded by an increasingly sophisticated
consumer and a higher purchasing power, has shaped the direction of the packaging market in
Mexico, resulting in the emergence of higher quality packaging, offering convenience and visual
appeal. Mexico is currently the 11th most populated country in the world and general demand is
growing accordingly. Also, 75% of all finished products in Mexico require packaging; of these,
90% are in the food and drinks category
In addition to a growing middle class, improving conditions among poorer consumers have
fuelled strong expansion in packaging volumes, creating a major opportunity for packaging
According to reports from the Packaging Machinery Manufacturers Institute (PMMI), Mexico is
the second largest buyer of equipment in the packaging industry, mainly from the United States.
Packaging in Mexico offers strong opportunities for foreign companies for a number of reasons.
Several multinational packaging companies have successfully entered the packaging industry in
Mexico and increased segmentation among consumer goods and retailing has enabled packaging
manufacturers to innovate and to expand their customer base.
Due to this growth, Mexican companies have a tendency for investment in machinery and
packaging equipment to meet the demands of consumers. Mexico is one of the largest buyers of
packaging equipment, with an annual average growth rate of 7% over the last 3 years. The
packaging machinery market is projected to have grown 6% in 2008 to a record $600 million
USD. The packaging industry represents 1.8% of the GNP and 9.2% of the industrial GNP.
Opportunities for the UK Manufacturers
In 2007, Italy, Germany and the United States supplied 69% of total imported packaging
machinery. Historically, the United States had dominated the packaging machinery market in
Mexico but ?in recent years- European-made equipments are rapidly changing this paradigm.
This is due mainly to the fact that European suppliers offer competitive sales conditions, and
high grade equipment.
There is huge opportunity for British suppliers in three main sectors:
? Machinery and high grade equipment supply or manufacture;
? Innovation in new materials;
? Recycling technologies and processes;
Opportunities for British Packaging Machines
British companies could benefit from their competitive advantages in equipment and machines
while selling to Mexican packagers and bottlers. Their technological base coupled with a good
sales plan could give them the upper hand.
British manufacturers offering a high tech base and integrated lines of production have a great
opportunity for expansion and revenue in this market. A hardy construction with flexible formats
and competitive sales policies and/or service packages would cover the increasing demand in the
market. Service packages included in the price of the machine or sold separately are also sought
It is also expected that European manufacturers expanding local assembly of packaging
machinery in Mexico will be able to offer a better selling price to the local companies reducing
their logistics and production costs while offering the same technological and quality standards.
Establishing assembly facilities in Mexico will also provide these companies with a privileged
entry point to the American and Canadian (North American Free Trade Agreement) markets.
Green Processes, Materials & Environment
New materials and processes which are energy and cost efficient, as well as friendlier to the
environment are rapidly gaining importance; and rightly so. The savings related to an efficient
recycling system are now being taken in account.
Moreover products obtained from the recycling process have a high commercial value. Flexible
plastics, glass, metals, cardboard and other recyclable materials are more and more valued. The
recycling market was valued in 2006 around $44 million USD, but the potential value is around
$700 million USD per year.
One of the biggest issues in the recycling industry in Mexico is the lack of know-how in different
fields such as process and design; as every plastic process requires qualified personnel.
Opportunities for British companies exist wherever technical knowledge of new processes and
chain-of-production systems are required, either for quality grade or for the proper application of
new and innovative materials, designs and packages.
Recycling and biodegradable materials also represent a great opportunity, due to the recent high
interest in greener technologies in Mexico. This represents lower production cost since raw
materials are no longer needed and energy costs are greatly diminished.
To give an example, Mexico is recycling only 10% of total plastics production. It is estimated
that in 2006 around 65 thousand tons of PET were recycled. But 675 thousand tons were left out
of the process. With new recycling processes, more factories engaging in this business genre will
An energy efficient and environmentally friendly production line in the process and packaging
industry would ultimately reduce production costs while gaining reputation for environmental
responsibility and, possibly, some taxing benefits.
Mexico strives to provide excellent quality in the packaging sector. The glass packaging industry
has become the main focus for companies, because of its competitive prices as compared to
plastic containers, and its environmentally friendly manufacturing process.
With this boom in the packaging sector, machinery is more in demand, and European products
due to their high quality and technology/innovative options, can be definitely a good option for
Mexican companies when acquiring new technologies. There is also a strong tendency to
purchase new, but also used equipment in the sector, and 85% of the equipment is imported,
which represents an enormous opportunity for UK firms.
Latest export opportunities ? Mechanical, Electrical & Process Engineering
Latest export opportunities ? Metals, Minerals & Materials
Latest export opportunities - Mexico
Getting into the market
There are 4 major market players in the packaging industry in Mexico: Vitro Group; FEMSA
Empaques, Tetra Pak and Copamex. These companies will be seeking to improve their
More about doing business in Mexico
Market intelligence is critical when doing business overseas, and UKTI can provide bespoke
market research and support during overseas visits though our chargeable Overseas Market
Introduction Service (OMIS).
To commission research or for general advice about the market, get in touch with our specialists
in country - or contact your local international trade team.
? Jonathan Clare, Trade and Investment Consul, British Consulate, Monterrey, Tel. +52
(81) 8356 5359 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
? Luis Dario Ochoa , Trade and Investment Officer, British Consulate, Monterrey, Tel. +52
(81) 8356 5359 or email: email@example.com
? Carlos Botello , Trade and Investment Officer, British Consulate, Monterrey, Tel. +52
(81) 8356 5359 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact your local international trade team
UKTI runs a range of events for exporters, including seminars in the UK, trade missions to
overseas markets and support for attendance at overseas trade shows.
Latest events ? Mechanical, Electrical & Process Engineering
Latest events ? Metals, Minerals & Materials
PLAST IMAGEN 2013
Date: 12-15 March 2013
PACK Expo Las Vegas 2012
Date: 28-31 October 2012
More about OMIS and other UKTI services for exporters