Growth forecast for the North American metal cans market

The North American metal cans market was valued at US$11.06 billion in 2020. It is projected to be worth US$14.47 billion by 2026, registering a CAGR of 3.62% during the forecast period of 2021-2026, as announced on

With a significant share in the metal can packaging market, the food and beverage industry is witnessing massive demand amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, as the industry falls under the essential commodity.

The lockdown enforced across the region due to the Covid-19 pandemic has bought a significant change in consumption habits. There has been an increasing demand for packaged food products, meat, vegetables, and fruits.

Key Highlights

Metal cans are ideal packaging solutions for the on-the-go lifestyle of many consumers in the region. They can be easily transported or carried. In addition, the increasing popularity of energy drinks, the introduction of new products, and the price and recyclability of cans augment the market growth.

Brands are introducing new energy drinks. In 2020, Coca-Cola North America unveiled the first-ever energy drink under the Coke brand Coca-Cola Energy Cherry a flavour available exclusively in the United States. Their zero-calorie counterparts will be available nationwide in 12-oz. sleek cans.

Furthermore, according to the Aluminum Association and Can Manufacturers Institute (CMI), 2020 report, the industry recycling rate of aluminium can account for 55.9% in the US, and the consumer recycling rate of aluminium can account for 46.1%.

The cosmetic segment in the region is also driving the growth of the metal cans market in the area as many cosmetic and personal care manufacturers prefer metal cans packaging for their products.

The food and beverage industry, with a major share in the metal, can packaging market, has witnessed huge demand amidst the pandemic, as the industry falls under the essential commodity. According to a 2020 survey published by Store Brands, the consumption of canned food due to the Covid-19 pandemic increased by 96% in the US. Also, frozen dinners consumption also increased by 71%.

Key Market Trends

Metal cans are most widely used for beverages. The most notable trend of canned wine, cocktails, hard drinks, and soft drinks is packaged in metal, driven by the need for portability in North America. The usage of metal cans in the beverage industry can be widely classified into alcoholic drinks and non-alcoholic drinks, based on the nature of the beverage. Alcoholic beverages, such as beer, have historically used metal cans, while other kinds, like wine, traditionally served in glass bottles, are increasingly being packaged in metal cans.

Moreover, beverage can manufacturers have reduced the weight by reducing the gauge required to make the cans. Metal cans can support the carbonation pressure that is needed to package soda. Metal cans resist forces up to 90 pounds per square inch. This factor makes the cans the favored choice for packaging in the beverage industry.

Metal can manufacturers are increasing the production capacity in North America to address the supply chain disruption faced due to the shortage in metal cans. The president of the Ball Corporation has identified the demand to outstrip the supply until 2023. The aggressive demand and growth of metal cans in the beverage industry sparked multiple investments in the sector in the studied region.

For instance, in September 2021, packaging company Ball Corporation announced an investment of US$290 million over the course of multiple years into a new aluminium beverage packaging plant in Las Vegas. The plant is expected to create a range of can sizes. The facility is scheduled to begin production in late 2022 and will create 180 manufacturing jobs when it is fully operational.

Ardagh Group announced in October 2020 that the two new high-speed beverages could manufacture lines in its production facility in Mississippi. The company announced that the investment is aimed to cater to the production of its patented sleek design line for various beverages, including hard seltzers, beer, energy drinks, and tea.

US accounts for the largest share

Many companies in the market are adding new lines to existing plants and are making productivity enhancements because of the can shortage issues due to the pandemic. For instance, in September 2020, Ball Corporation announced that it would open an aluminium beverage packaging plant in Pittston, Pennsylvania, by mid-2021 to serve the North American market as the at-home consumption grows due to the pandemic. The company initially planned a six billion can output expansion by 2021. Ball Corporation is opening two new plants and adding two production lines to the US facilities by the end of 2021.

Many restaurants and bars were closed with the pandemic, due to which canned alcoholic beverages witnessed a significant increase in sales. Also, many beverage manufacturers shifted their products into cans, which has put a strain on the aluminium can supply chain. To cater to the demand for cans, many manufacturers have been opening facilities to meet this ever-growing demand.

For instance, in January 2021, Crown Holdings invested in two new beverage can plants in Henry Country, Virginia, and Minas Gerais State, Southeast Brazil. The plant in Virginia will be supplying beverage cans to serve various categories, including sparkling water, energy drinks, carbonated soft drinks, tea, functional beverages, hard seltzers, beer, and cocktails. The company is expanding its North American supply network with the plant to address the growing standard and specialty beverage cans market.

Additionally, in April 2021, Crown Holdings unveiled its plan to build its third new beverage can production facility in the US. The plant will produce cans for sparkling waters, energy drinks, carbonated soft drinks, functional beverages, beers, among other beverages.

Can Manufacturers Institute (CMI) beverage can manufacturer and aluminium can sheet producer members are committing to achieving ambitious US recycling rate targets, including a 70% recycling rate by 2030. These new targets will improve the circularity of the aluminium beverage can while demonstrating to beverage companies and consumers the industry’s dedication to ensuring the aluminium beverage can remain the most sustainable package on the market.

Competitive Landscape

The North America metal cans market is moderately competitive. The major players with a significant share in the market are expanding their customer base across various regions. In addition, many companies are forming strategic and collaborative initiatives with multiple companies to increase their market share and profitability. Some of the recent developments in the market are:

March 2021 – Ball Corporation, along with the partnered company Damm, one of the leading beverage companies in Spain, introduced ASI’s (The Aluminum Stewardship Initiative) aluminium cans for storage and packaging of beer in North America. This is expected to increase the sales performance of the company.February 2021 – Ardagh Group agreed to merge its metal packaging business with Gores Holdings V, creating a publicly listed company. The agreement will see Gores Holdings V, a unique purpose acquisition company, merge with Ardagh’s metal packaging division to form the newly created Ardagh Metal. Ardagh will retain an 80% stake in AMP and receive up to US$3.4 billion in cash when the transaction completes. The deal includes up to US$525 million in cash from Gores Holdings V and US$600 million in a private placement led by investors, along with approximately US$2.3 billion of new debt raised by AMP.

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