Growth of E-Commerce Influencing the Packaging Industry

May 15, 2020
ULMA is ready to support businesses as they adapt to e-commerce needs.

The rise in e-commerce food and grocery sales means that packaging must adapt to withstand increased transportation, bolster hygiene to prevent contamination, and look more visually appealing, says Dave Berriman, Technical Manager at ULMA Packaging UK.


Dave, explains: “The COVID-19 world health epidemic has led to an increase in e-commerce sales, as both businesses and consumers practice social distancing to limit the spread of the virus. In turn, this has presented a new set of packaging challenges.” 


To meet the upsurge in e-commerce sales, food manufacturers must adapt packs to ensure they can reach the consumer in a suitable condition, says Dave: “The challenges of e-commerce includes increased transportation, as packs go through more travel stages to get to the consumer.”


 proteccion-iconProviding suitable mechanical protection to withstand transportation, so that it looks good and is well preserved when it reaches consumers, bearing in mind the food transportation process.





Bolstering hygiene and preventing internal contamination is crucial, especially in the current health crisis, Dave continues: “Loose fresh grocery products now need to be packaged for online shopping to maintain product integrity and hygiene. Vacuum and protective atmosphere packaging help with food preservation, whilst providing a barrier to shield products from contaminants during transit.”



protagonismo-iconThe visual aspect of packaging is another consideration for manufacturers to review when transitioning to e-commerce sales, Dave concludes: “Designing packs to display and showcase the product will not only make it more attractive to prospective buyers, but also easier for pickers to select when preparing the customer’s purchase. Manufacturers should make the most of packaging by incorporating easily identifiable labelling or new solutions with bar codes or QR codes.”



sostenible-iconBeing sustainable and environmentally friendly and minimising the use of film. Using as little material as possible when packaging the product, taking into account the size, the thickness of the protective material, eliminating unnecessary packaging, etc. Packaging needs to be recyclable, compostable, manufactured using alternative materials that protect the product while also promoting sustainability.




Optimising space to facilitate transportation and cut costs is unquestionably one of the challenges of this new age of packaging. Excessive packaging is superfluous; consumers shop online and know what they want, prioritising receiving their shopping in a good condition. Lightweight and strong packaging, leak-proof, able to withstand transportation and handling.