US Box Market Growth Gets Boost from Trends in E-Commerce, Foodservice, & Delivery

Cleveland OH, March 22, 2022 – A new Freedonia Group analysis projects demand for corrugated and paperboard boxes in the US to increase 2.0% yearly from a high 2021 base to $49.9 billion, with volume demand reaching 31.9 million tons.

Although this market is mature, the analysis finds that there are notable growth opportunities in nonmanufacturing applications such as e-commerce, foodservice, and delivery. In addition, suppliers will continue to introduce higher value boxes to the market in order to meet the sustainability and efficiency needs of their customers.

Foodservice & Carryout Applications Will Bolster Demand for Folding Cartons

Rising use of multi-restaurant delivery platforms such as DoorDash, Grubhub, and Uber Eats – along with subsequent increased delivery and takeout options offered by restaurants themselves – will boost healthy gains in demand for folding cartons in foodservice and carryout applications, the analysis finds.

New municipal regulations and manufacturers’ efforts to reduce the amount of single-use plastics used in the foodservice segment will also benefit demand for folding cartons; however, cartons will continue to face some competition from single-use plastics due to consumer preferences for packaging that reduces the occurrence of food spills and leaks.

Want to Learn More?

Corrugated & Paperboard Boxes is now available from The Freedonia Group. This report encompasses demand for and production of corrugated and paperboard boxes. Historical (2011, 2016, and 2021) data and forecasts to 2026 are presented in current dollars and tons by product, market, and material.


  • corrugated boxes (including solid fiber boxes)
  • folding paperboard boxes (also referred to as folding cartons)
  • set-up (rigid) paperboard boxes

Markets (segments)

  • food and beverage (grain mill products; meat, poultry, and seafood; beverages; fresh produce; frozen foods; bakery products; canned foods; dairy products; candy and confections; other foods)
  • nonfood nondurable goods (paper and publishing; rubber and plastics; pharmaceuticals; chemical products; cosmetics and toiletries; other nonfood nondurable goods)
  • durable goods (machinery and equipment; glass and ceramic products; fabricated metal products; furniture, lumber, and wood products; toys and sporting goods; silverware and jewelry; motor vehicle parts; music, entertainment, and software; instruments; all other durable goods)
  • nonmanufacturing (foodservice and carryout; e-commerce; moving, storage, and other nonmanufacturing markets)


  • paperboard (unbleached kraft; recycled; semichemical; bleached kraft)
  • adhesives
  • protective coatings (wax; wax alternatives)
  • inks