Keywords: technological change, drinks packaging industry, Spain
An analysis of the process of packaging substitution in the drinks industry: the Spanish case
The aim of this article is to describe and analyse the factors governing the process of diffusion of technological change in the drinks packaging industry which occurred in Spain between 1982 and 1992. This industry is characterised by the presence of four main technological choices: glass bottles, composite cartons, plastic containers, and metal cans. These compete to satisfy the demands of the bottling industry. This brings with it a need to carry out any analysis of the competition among them on two planes on the one hand, competition between different sections of industry, and on the other competition between firms in the same section. Moreover, the processes and results of competition affecting containers will be modified by regulations aimed at protecting the environment. This set of factors, together with the current patterns and tendencies affecting the world of consumers and the presence of major multinational industrial groups both in the supply of containers and as users and distributors of them, leads to a high level of complexity in the chain of production linking basic raw materials to finished goods and to disposal of them after use, affected by environmental concerns.