Glass packaging production in Europe grew by 2.9% in volume and 2.1% in unit terms last year, according to the latest data published by European Container Glass Federation (FEVE).

This growth was driven by exports along with consistent demand for glass packaging from European food and beverage industries.

The glass packaging industry has seen steady growth trend for the last five years. Since 2012, the industry’s production has grown by 5.8% in volume and 6.1% in units.

FEVE president Johan Gorter said: “The buoyant demand for glass is a strong signal of trust from customers in our industry and in glass packaging to help brands stand out on the shelves both in the European market and internationally.”

“It is encouraging that consumers trust glass because of its sustainability credentials and because it best preserves the quality of their preferred products.”

Glass is used extensively in the beverage industry to package spirits, wines and beer. It is also increasing its share in food, water and dairy sectors.

The reason for increased usage of glass is due to new consumption trends for local, organic and natural food, as well as positive image that glass packaging has for environmental, health and taste preservation reasons.

According to InSites Research 2016 survey, one out of every two Europeans claim to use more glass now than they did three years ago while 75% of survey respondents consider glass as the most environmentally friendly packaging.

Gorter added: “It is encouraging that consumers trust glass because of its sustainability credentials and because it best preserves the quality of their preferred products.”

FEVE is an association of glass containers and machine-made glass tableware manufacturers based in Europe.

It comprises around 60 members that have a combined production of more than 20 million tonnes per year of glass containers that are catered to food, beverage, perfumery, cosmetics and pharmacy industries.