Letter: The effects of e-commerce on the packaging industry


My business life has been involved in packaging for over 36 years.

Corrugated packaging (boxes) is a true economic indicator. If you’ve ever made something, you’ve probably needed a box to ship it in. Because of COVID-19, all the mills and plants have been full for the last few years. Along the mills, e-commerce was booming and box plants were rapidly expanding.

Recently, the price per ton dropped by $20, which may not seem like a lot, but many of the mills and plants are freaking out because business is slowing – meaningless demand for e-commerce (which was what was driving the increases).

There is a super box plant currently being built in Elgin by Atlantic; most likely, they assumed the e-commerce cycle would not end and are now facing a slowing market.

I tell you all, this is another indication of the ship sailing from the large warehouses and distribution centers. There are numerous indications that this is a losing proposition.

Michelle Kingsbury