From a market and scenarios standpoint, many things happened

Paper pods maintained their market share, in spite of fluctuations tied to the contingent crisis situation, and industrial mergers taking place in our sector.
The figures shared by the Presidency, although not certified, nonetheless resulted from considerations tied to the President’s direct experience, and supported by research commissioned by the most renowned coffee roasting companies.
First of all, the estimated market for E.S.E. paper pods is approximately 600 million pieces total, half of which sold in Italy. The rest is more or less equally divided between the U.S.A. and Europe.
The last few years’ (2012-2015) growth trend basically peaked at 12% (in 2011), and settled thereafter (from 2013 till today the volume decreased or rose slightly by a few percentage points). Lastly in 2015, it gained 2% in value.
Ultimately, because this is a mature product, the average price has been dropping slightly, by a few percentage points each year. Nonetheless, this has not prevented its value from rising slightly, by 5%. In terms of volume, growth has been much slower: 2% in the last three years.
Competition in the paper pod systems sector is rather fierce, and tends to favour systems that are closed, and use plastic rather than aluminium capsules, or capsules made of other materials like biodegradable plastics or others, which are rigid compared to paper.
The changing scenario of the last few years in fact included:

  • the rise of single-serving systems to the detriment of traditional roast & ground
  • major industrial mergers and competition, especially on the front of single-serving system intellectual property rights.
  • major uproars on the front of environmental sustainability and sustainability of plastic and aluminium single-serving systems.

E.S.E. standard pods, although a mature product, are becoming more popular in certain markets, such as the U.S.A., thanks to their being perceived as a light, not “over packaged” product.
The lack of over packaging, which severely affects many closed single-serving coffee systems, may be a key opportunity for growth, especially in markets that are most sensitive to environmental issues.