Luxury products are defined by their exclusivity, quality and premiumisation.

In any industry, the marketing of luxury goods hinges on the concept that they are difficult to obtain, whether that’s due to limited stock or a high price point, and unable to be found elsewhere.

The luxury packaging industry is no exception. Various packaging giants such as Mondi have introduced luxury ranges to their operations in a bid to serve high-end clients.

Trade show Luxe Pack, held in Monaco from 2-4 October 2023, brought together international exhibitors in the luxury packaging industry from over 90 countries to host conferences and provide networking opportunities.

Held in the Grimaldi Forum across its 75,000m², the event demonstrated the boom of luxury packaging companies as well as the extreme competition. Offerings covered spirits, beauty, homeware, personal care and fragrances, to name only a few.

With more than 450 exhibitors vying for the attention of attendees to demonstrate their latest products and technologies, the atmosphere was overstimulating and showcased that the luxury packaging market is now based on availability, as opposed to traditional ideas of exclusivity.

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For any brand with the means to be able to access luxury packaging can be seen as a positive development. However, it does bring into question whether luxury packaging is indeed a luxury anymore.

What’s more, the keyword of sustainability was being heavily promoted by the crowds of exhibitors. The reality of whether sustainability and luxury packaging can coalesce has been a topic of discussion in recent years. The difficulty is sorting out greenwashing from genuine sustainability, which is difficult to achieve at a heaving trade show.

Certainly, sustainable products such as refillable packaging were centre stage, displaying the progress that has been made in recent years as consumer demand for sustainability has heightened.

However, the concern for luxury packaging in particular is the issue of excessiveness. Minimalism should not be limited to a luxurious design but should also be applied to the materials used.

Luxe Pack Monaco 2023 was a quantifiable success, but the luxury packaging industry is seemingly becoming an overcrowded monolith that is under threat of losing the exclusivity that differentiates premium products.