German Aluminum Aerosol Can Update

Written on: January 23, 2023 by SprayTM

Manufacturers satisfied with 2022 demand; skilled worker shortage requires new ideas

The German Aluminum Association (Aluminium Deutschland e. V. or AD) announced that manufacturers of aluminum aerosol cans and tubes are satisfied overall with their deliveries to the German market in 2022.

Deliveries of aluminum aerosol cans saw a strong increase of 15% to 573 million cans in 2022. The dominant market for deodorants, as well as satisfactory demand for hair care products, contributed to the overall positive result. Sustainability and energy are still at the top of manufacturers’ agendas.

In the case of aluminum tubes, weaker demand at the end of 2022 led to a slight decline in deliveries (2%). AD noted that the total volume of 765 million units was a respectable result in view of challenging economic situations. The decline in deliveries was moderate, in particular due to brisk demand from the Pharmaceutical sector, while the Food and Household sectors fell short of expectations.

The topic of sustainability remains a central issue in the industry, along with the threatening development of energy prices in 2022. Although energy prices have calmed down slightly, said AD, the situation is likely to remain volatile and somewhat unpredictable overall due to the continuing, uncertain global political situation. In addition, energy price declines only reach industry and consumers with a noticeable delay. Further energy savings will therefore remain a central task for companies in 2023, especially since energy prices are not expected to ever return to pre-crisis levels.

Skills shortage challenge

“One of the biggest challenges in the next few years will be the glaring shortage of skilled workers,” said Clemens Behrenbruch, Chairman of AD’s Tubes, Cans & Impact Extruded Parts Division.

“Working on the production line in shifts is not popular with the junior staff of the so-called ‘Generation Z.’ Here it is important to increase the attractiveness of a modern, meaningful and crisis-proof job in the sustainable aluminum packaging industry through innovative company management, production planning and employee concepts. This also includes continuing to work on improving the image of packaging, which is still wrongly thought of as “waste” by large sections of the population. Only in this way will the industry be successful in the fierce competition for qualified workers,” Behrenbruch noted.

Outlook for 2023

At present, the existing order backlog makes the industry cautiously optimistic for the first quarter.

“However, should consumer sentiment and demand in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) markets deteriorate due to the recession expected in Germany and the ongoing loss of purchasing power, the situation could worsen from the second quarter of 2023 onward. Continued strong demand from the pharmaceutical sector could have a stabilizing effect. However, there are still too many question marks for a reliable medium-term forecast,” Behrenbruch concluded.