Single serve beverage capsules - Market Overview


Single serve beverage capsules - Market Overview

Date of publication: September 2016


From a niche market, single serve beverage capsules have grown to be one of the most important sub-applications of the ambient thin wall packaging segment in the past 5 years. This dynamic market segment has a complex value chain. There are a number of coffee brewing systems available with proprietary capsule designs. Nespresso and Keurig are brands pioneered the emergence of the segment and have the highest machine instalment rates globally. 

Nevertheless, the expiry of their design patents in 2012 brought about disruptive changes in the supply chain. This change has created new opportunities for both end-users and converters to tap into this growing market segment.  On the other hand, the supply chain of capsules is rapidly losing its oligopolistic nature and the former dominance of major suppliers is challenged as the market expands.  A more fragmented supply chain affects the overall profit pool and they way consumers make their choices.

New opportunities lie in expanding product range onto tea brewing systems as well as cold drinks systems. While the untapped potential for cold drinks is yet to be proven, it is only telling how significant it might be with global giants such as Coca-Cola and PepsiCo bidding for their space in this market.

With the growing number of capsules in landfills, the industry is under pressure from the environmentalists as well as more conscientious consumers. There is an urging need to review the materials used for capsules conversion in search of more sustainable options, as well as to explore end-of-life solutions. Material changes are likely to disrupt the supply chain even further.

AMI Consulting has produced a new authoritative report on the global market for single serve beverage capsules, with a particular focus on Europe and North America.

The study gathers production details on a site-by-site basis and from these building blocks create an analysis of demand. The interview programme questioned producers and users on demand drivers within their specific market areas.

In this study AMI Consulting provides a detailed overview of the single serve beverage capsules systems available on the market and map out the supply chain in the major end-use geographies. The supply chain of capsule moulding was assessed based on production technologies available as well as materials used. The analysis includes growth drivers, inter-material competition, changing requirements, value-chain positioning and the key issues. 

The report:

  • Summarises consumer trends impacting the demand for packaged coffee.
  • Provides a detailed overview of the existing brewing systems and their main capsules characteristics
  • Analyses the market by brand and brewing system (proprietary versus non-proprietary)
    • coffee brewing systems
    • tea brewing systems
    • chilled drinks systems
  • Discusses the structure of supply within the segment including structural change and geographical distribution.
    • Sheet extruders/moulders/capsule dealers/customers
    • Market segmentation by supplier of capsules
    • Route to market models
  • Quantifies current and future demand for capsules in million units
  • Maps out geographical distribution of capsules moulding versus filling
  • Assesses the market demand by polymer (in tonnes)
  • Analyses inter-material substitution trends and emerging materials
  • Discusses the potential propositions provided by new products/technologies and the criticalities in their commercial development.

The report provides answers to the following questions:

  • What will be the volumes projected for 2020 by system and geographical region?
  • How does inter-polymer competition play and what are the important issues?
  • What are the trends in regard to scale and integration?
  • What impact will new processing technologies have on the market offering?
  • What are structural supply chain changes and how are they influencing the value of the market?
  • What impact will retail development, legislation, environmental concerns and consumer behaviour have on demand?

The answers to these questions will help producers understand:

  • How returns can be maximised
  • Where to concentrate marketing/technical resources
  • Where they are likely to achieve competitive advantage.

Product scope

For the purposes of this study, the market is divided into:

  • Proprietary systems, such as Nespresso, Keurig, other relevant
  • Non-proprietary systems, compatible with existing machines 

Moreover, the market investigates the three major product groups that utilise the capsule format:

  • Coffee brewing systems
  • Tea brewing systems
  • Chilled drinks systems

Polymer Scope

The principle plastics used to manufacture thin wall packaging in Europe are PS, PP, PET and PVC.  The report focuses on the following five polymer groups:

  • PP
  • PS
  • Other (EVOH, bio-polymers, other relevant)

Process Scope

  • Sheet extrusion
  • Thermoforming
  • Injection moulding

The study covers the production of single serve beverage capsules within 28 EU countries (+Norway, Switzerland) and North America (USA, Canada) as well as provides contextual information on emerging markets such as Australia, South Korea and Japan.

Capsules production data is provided individually for the following countries/regions:

  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • United Kingdom
  • Spain
  • The Netherlands
  • Switzerland
  • Austria
  • Other West Europe (Belgium, Luxembourg, Norway, Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Ireland, Greece, Portugal)
  • Poland
  • Other Central Europe (Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia)
  • USA
  • Canada

The report is supplied as a downloadable PDF with an enterprise-wide license agreement. One printed hard copy of the report is also provided.

To receive a proposal, sample pages or for further information please click the Enquire/Order button above.

Press release:

The market impact of compatibles on the coffee capsules industry 


Related events:

Single Serve Capsules Chicago 2018: 19 - 20 June 2018, The Westin Chicago North Shore, Chicago, United States

Single Serve Capsules Vienna 2018: 5 - 6 September 2018, Austria Trend Hotel Park Royal Palace, Vienna, Austria

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