How to start a food packaging business?

LegalKart Editor
LegalKart Editor 05 min read 756 Views
Last Updated: Nov 03, 2023
Step-by-step guide for Food packaging business setup in India

You must be familiar with many food delivery platforms. But, are you familiar with the fact that packaging these foods is in itself an entire industry.

A practical roadmap and planning are essential to the success of any business. We discuss how to start a food packaging business in this write-up.

How do I start a Food Packaging Business?

  1. Planning

The market that one intends to target must be chosen during the planning stage. Packaging is a flexible industry. One must therefore concentrate on a particular market.  In your packaging business plan, do some research and review the data of what is setting and trending. For this, one needs to create a strong business plan that will enable the enterprise to succeed.

Second, one must consider the available resources and the capital requirements of the packaging industry. Understanding how much packaging the organisation needs is crucial for managing costs successfully. Saving for unpredictable circumstances is also a crucial at the same time. Last but not least, a successful balance between supply and demand is necessary to maintain the business.

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        2. Execution

The company is given a specific name at this point. The ideal business name is succinct, noticeable, and representative of what it provides. The business entity must register under the Food Safety and Standards Act of 2006 (FSSAI) at this step by selecting the proper company structure for its operations. LLPs, companies, sole proprietorships, and partnerships are some of the most popular business structures. This registration grants the company the necessary license to conduct business.

A packaging company should also think about going online through one of the many consumer-friendly e-commerce platforms available for it to succeed.

At this stage, the following things should be made available:

  • Trademark registration
  • Seller's Permit/Vendor's License
  • Non-disclosure Agreement
  • Employee Contracts and offer letters
  • Business Plan
  • Website Terms of Use Agreement

These documents should ideally be drafted by professionals equipped with the requisite skills.

  3. Promotion and Launch

A strong marketing plan is necessary to ensure that the company that sells food packaging reaches the target market. Ideally, promotion should be carried out both online and offline. At this phase, test marketing should be done frequently.


The food packaging market is expanding quickly. The rising globalisation of trade in goods & services and the emergence of new trade forms like organised retailing & e-commerce have all contributed to the Indian packaging industry's rapid expansion, even in the pre-Covid period.

The Indian packaging sector anticipated expansion at a CAGR of 18% from 2016 to 21. Covid-19 may have considerably hindered this growth, but other industries, such as packaged food and drinks, pharmaceuticals, functional foods, and hygiene products, were mainly unaffected. These industries have experienced optimal growth in demand and production, which has increased packaging demand. 

People are more prone to wanting quick fixes for anything, including food, especially those from urban regions. As a result, the demand for packaged food or so-called "ready-to-eat food." As a result, the food packaging business is now being pushed to speed up the process.

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The Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006[1] has laid down the following requirements

  1. Packaged foods must be put in utensils or containers, which is safe.
  2. For dairy products, the packaging/wrapping should be mechanically sealed, and it should not be reused. It should only be kept in the storage rooms that have been designated after proper packaging.
  3. For packaging edible oils and fats, tin plates used in tin containers should meet the requirements for prime grade quality outlined in the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS).
  4. For fruits and vegetables: Any fruit product shall be packaged in a container that is so tightly sealed that it cannot be opened without erasing the manufacturer's specific identifying mark, which should be visible on the top or neck of the bottle following the standards set by BIS. 
  5. To prevent possible adulteration or contamination of the water, drinking water should be packaged in sterile glass bottles, food-grade polycarbonate, or clean, hygienic bottles/containers made of polyethene (PE) (conforming to IS:10146), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyalkylene terephthalate (PET and PBT), conforming to IS: 12252, polypropylene (conforming to IS: 10910).


Wrappers are used for individual goods; wrappers shield food from contamination from hands and the surroundings.

A tray is a flat, thick paperboard object with raised edges to hold the product firmly in place while minimising movement.

Boxes are the simplest type of packaging, allowing for simple transportation of the food item. Boxes are frequently built of wood, corrugated fiberboard, or metal, which increases their resistance and reduces their susceptibility to damage.

Pallets – Pallets are typically used when food is transported in bulk.

Bags – Plastic bags are typically used to transport food.

Cans  Steel/metal cans are also used to transport food. These help preserve the food better.

Flexible packaging is a type of non-rigid, flexible packaging that may conform to any shape, size, or structure, as the name implies. This kind of packaging, which resembles bags a lot, shields food products from environmental factors while significantly prolonging their shelf life.

Aseptic processing is used to pack sterile food products to ensure they retain their sterility. This packaging combines paper, polyethylene, and metal and has a thick polyethylene layer.

Boxes and cartons can frequently be used interchangeably. Cartons are built from corrugated cardboard, just like boxes, and might have paraffin or plastic coating to make them more durable against moisture and other coercive agents. 

Egg cartons are moulds that are patterned like eggs and are used to transport eggs securely.

Gable-top cartons are a common choice for milk and juice since they have gables at the top that may be opened by pinching and pulling.

Folding cartons are created as flat cardboard components that the food producer can put together.

Aseptic cartons are used for processed foods that must be kept fresh for a long time.



"In conclusion, setting up a food packaging business in India involves a series of well-defined steps, ranging from market research and business planning to obtaining necessary licenses and ensuring quality control. This guide has aimed to simplify this intricate process by offering a step-by-step roadmap for aspiring entrepreneurs. By adhering to the outlined procedures and legal requirements, you can build a sustainable and successful food packaging enterprise in one of the world's most dynamic markets. Remember, the key to longevity in this industry lies not just in compliance and quality, but also in continuous innovation and customer satisfaction."




[1] The Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006.

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