Packaging Trends in the Lube & Grease Market 2021

Packaging Trends in the Lube & Grease Market 2021

According to a report from Grand View Research that assesses the lubricant packaging market up until 2025, significant growth is expected in the near-term, especially as it pertains to the automotive, power generation, oil and gas, and chemical industries. One market research firm concludes the overall lubricant market will tick upwards at a 3.1 percent continuous average growth rate (CAGR) through 2027. However, in the near-term, reports expect the automotive market to continue to dominate demand, notably as it pertains to engine oil and fluids. The marine and aerospace industries are also significant players in this sector. In this post, we’ll take a closer look at lube and grease packaging trends for 2021, as well as some factors that could have a significant impact on the market further down the road.


Sustainability is driving packaging trends in all industries, and lube and grease packaging is no exception. There are a few reasons why there’s such a big push for sustainable packaging. One, many governing bodies worldwide have set sustainable goals both in the near-term and in the long-term. This growing push for a more circular economy is unquestionably going to have a trickle-down effect on the way products are packaged. And two, consumers are now much more eco-conscious when making purchasing decisions. They don’t just want to purchase environmentally-friendly products; they want the packaging that protects them from being sustainable as well. Lube and grease packaging is attempting to usher in a new era of more sustainable packaging by decreasing the amount of raw material used and working more recycled plastics into its packaging. Using lighter steel drums has also been proven to reduce the impact on the environment.

Flexible-Rigid Packaging Formats

Plastic and metal aren’t as mutually exclusive as packaging materials as they once were in the lube and grease packaging market. While drums, plastic pouches, cans, and pails are still the main types of packaging in the market, a new “hybrid” type of package is also increasing in popularity in this sector: the bag-in-box format. As the name implies, this package combines plastic packaging and rigid corrugated, often dispersing lube and grease via a spout for easy, convenient distribution. The corrugated portion of the package is also recyclable.

In other packaging news, it’s expected that smart packaging will shape the future of this market, as global brands are under pressure to protect their products via the use of anti-counterfeiting technologies and other special features.

High Print Quality

As markets become more competitive, brands need to discover ways to stand out from their competition. When it comes to the lube and grease market, high-end brands attempt to do this via high definition printing on the packaging produced for their products. New printing technologies, such as digital printing, can print in crystal clear high definition and vibrant colors, helping to indeed cast certain brands and their offerings in a first-class light. Another benefit to using digital printing is that it’s considered an “on-demand” technology, meaning that one-off or limited run print jobs can be created so that packaging looks different.

Looking to the Future

While growth is forecast in the lube and grease packaging market in the near-term, keep in mind that much of this growth is in the automotive industry – and with electric cars perhaps soon to become the widespread form of consumer vehicle, demand for these types of products could drastically decrease. This isn’t so much of a packaging trend as it is a market-wide challenge that will need to be addressed to ensure long-term success.


If you’re packaging needs span the following industries and applications, CDF’s UN-certified bag-in-box serves them:

  • Chemical: adhesives, agricultural, automotive oils, chemicals, coatings, detergents, inks, lubricants, paints, petroleum
  • Cosmetic: cleansers, conditioner, cream, liquid makeup, lotion, shampoo, tanning spray
  • Food & Beverage: flavorings, purees, sauces, vinegar, beverage base, coffee, dairy, juice, lemonade, tea, water
  • Medical

Let’s Get Classy

If you’re in any portion of the packaging supply chain— manufacturing, distribution and transportation, or end-use customer—you probably already know about the classification of your substances. Here’s a quick review of the two classes CDF serves with bag-in-box packaging solutions.

What Is Class II?

If your product is gaseous or contains gases in the material mix, it would fall under the class I group. This group demands the most rigorous results—survival from a 1.8-meter drop—and also encompasses immediately dangerous items, such as poisons. If your product falls in this packaging category, you are responsible for determining and choosing packaging. This includes bag-in-box-style packaging, and ensures reliable containment during shipment and storage.

What Is Class III?

If your product is liquid and potentially flammable, particularly if there’s an explosive risk, your product would fall into class III packaging. To pass muster, and in order to stay in compliance as a class III product, your bag-in-box packaging will have to remain intact and viable from a drop of 1.2 meters. You are also responsible for determining if your product falls into this category, but with both class II and class III products, the right packaging partner will help you make sure your packaging solutions are in compliance.

Bag-in-Box Performance Benefits

  • Bag-in-box is a replacement for many rigid packages, including cube-shaped inserts, cans, and plastic pails.
  • Both pillow and form-fit bags are suitable for use with manual, semi-automatic, and fully automatic fill lines.
  • Virtually a flat bag, minimizing shipping and warehouse space requirements.
  • Bag-in-box uses significantly less plastic and on average, costs notably less than a similar capacity rigid container, including plastic pails, bottle, and cube-shaped containers.
  • Dispenses without surging or glugging.
  • Bag-in-box offers excellent quality due to its superior seam strength.
  • Bag-in-box fills without air, therefore no foaming or splashing.

These certifications and classifications translate to “reliability” when it comes to finding the right packaging. The best way to protect yourself, your product, and the reputation of your brand is to partner with a packaging supplier that understands and uses them responsibly. CDF has been providing trustworthy and comprehensive packaging solutions to your industry for more than 40 years, so when you use one of our designs, you’ll know your products are safe and in compliance. Whether you’re packing and transporting class II, class III, or other items that you want assurance will travel safely, if it’s in one of our boxes, you’ll know it’s arriving intact.

CDF’s UN-Certified bag-in-box meets all UN requirements and is certified by a third-party lab following the Department of Transportation guidelines. Click here for more information on CDF’s UN-certified bag-in-box.