Export Impact For Good

Countries / Territories


  • Packaging

    Packaging is a vital component of export success. Products need to be preserved and protected in order to reach their destination in perfect condition. Packaging also needs to position, differentiate and sell the product, using materials that comply with regulations. ITC has been providing specialist expertise, training and advisory services in this field for more than 40 years. It possesses the most extensive information base and specialist knowledge to assist governments, trade support institutions and the business community with all aspects related to export packaging.

    Information | Advisory services | Training | Networks | Projects  


    ITC’s export packaging services include the most comprehensive knowledge database on export packaging available in the world for developing countries. PACKit is a modular information system consisting of 40 modules with an extensive coverage of packaging technology, specific product packaging, and regulations. ITC also publishes an internationally acknowledged multilingual glossary of packaging terms and packaging publications.

    The Packaging Practice makes available the following publications, links and information databases:


    ITC conducted a global survey on who does what in the field of packaging research and education. This survey was conducted by identifying relevant web sources and auditing their contents. The results of this global survey are contained in the Directory of Packaging-related institutions.

    If this directory is of use to you, the Packaging Partner Networks by Country database may also be of interest.

    For more information please contact us.


    For more information refer to Description of PACKit modules.

    Advisory services

    An international network of highly qualified ITC packaging experts is available to provide advisory services at various levels in the market chain. At the macro level, these experts are mobilized to provide assistance in the development of export strategies for the national packaging industry as well as to advise on the optimization of national packaging supply chains. At the meso level, ITC support institutions with creating and professionally managing packaging information and training centres as well as packaging technical resource centres. ITC experts also work at the sector level by enabling groups of enterprises to optimize their export performance at all stages from harvesting and processing to end market destination.

    ITC’s Export Packaging practice provides advisory services to:


    ITC advises governments to develop a vision and strategic direction in order to ensure that exporting SMEs have the means and resources to:

    1. build local skills in technical packaging
    2. access testing facilities for packaging
    3. utilise a dynamic packaging supply chain in the country that will encourage exporting, including favourable duty and transportation rates.

    ITC advises government organizations in the set up of national packaging information centres and packaging testing center facilities, including the training of qualified technical staff and the management of such centers. ITC also assists in setting up national packaging standards and working closely with the relevant standards boards in-country. These include packaging, as well as labelling regulations.

    Trade support institutions:

    ITC has been instrumental in the creation of packaging institutions in countries such as Ghana, Nigeria, Sri Lanka and Tunisia. ITC provides a total solutions package that includes the training of staff, training of trainers and the licensing of the PACKit modular learning system. ITC also assists institutions in the setting up of packaging information centres.


    A critical advisory support service to exporters deals with the optimization of the technical performance of the packaging operation, from product sourcing (e.g. post-harvest), through manufacturing (full integration of the production process with the packaging/filling operations) to the final end user (boxing, paletization, shipment, in store merchandizing, user convenience). These services require qualified expert resources in specific fields, from processed food to dangerous goods or cosmetics packaging experts who can cover the whole range of packages, including bulk transportation packs, industrial packs and consumer packs. The technical advisory services also include printing and packaging design. These can be combined with specialized expertise from ITC’s Export Quality and Supply Chain Management practices.

    Packaging and Marketing

    SME managers often see packaging as an add-on-cost to the product rather than understanding the value and power of using packaging as an ambassador for the product and the producer. ITC’s training and information resources enable exporters to better understand the interaction between marketing, communications, promotions and branding to ensure seamless optimization of product packaging and marketing practices. This includes consulting on the competitive environment, consumer needs and wants in the destinations markets, design options, communication requirements and possibilities for promotional packaging. This service is often coupled with other Enterprise Competitiveness advisory services including quality and branding. For more information about packaging design, packaging clinics, and set-up technical institutes click here.


    ITC provide customized training programmes covering all aspects of export packaging. These can be based upon ITC’s PACKit suite.

    The PACKit training programme covers: packaging technology, design, transport and distribution, materials and specific country studies. Target audiences include packaging producers, packaging users, trade supporters, packaging institutions and government bodies.

    PACKit - The Integrated Export Packaging Information Kit for Developing Countries (PACKit).

    The PACKit suite consists of 40+ concise modules providing expert knowledge on all aspects related to packaging and successful exporting. The modules can be used as standalone reference materials or customized into training tools. These provide practical, hands-on information useful to private sector enterprises or public institutions involved in supporting the export chain.

    The PACKit training programme has been developed over the past ten years in response to the absence of specialized information on packaging for developing countries. Supply chain constraints often contribute to problems of product preservation, protection, presentation and usage. Whilst this was known by international packaged-goods companies, awareness and application of packaging best practices was largely absent in developing countries. With significant internal expertise and a mandate to optimize exports from developing countries, ITC invested several million dollars and drew upon the expertise of world-renowned experts to create PACKit.

    Today, SMEs and institutions worldwide use PACKit modules as a way of gaining the knowledge to package goods successfully and distinctively for international export competitiveness. The kit is also of interest to those involved in the export value chain such as producers; users and importers of packaging material; those involved in physical distribution; insurance and finance; and business associations.

    The modules also provide value-added content for specialized consultants as well as universities and R&D institutions involved in export packaging.

    PACKit modules are organized along four pillars:

    Packaging materials

    Products sector export
    packaging requirements

    Importing country profile



    Casting & Forgings



    Health, Safety & Environment



    Processed Food


    Packaging & Marketing

    Paper & Board

    Cut Flowers

    Spices & Herbs


    Packaging Design



    Dried Fruits & Vegetables

    The Netherlands




    Fish & Seafood


    Transport & Distribution


    Hides & Skins





    Natural Products

    Fresh Fruits & Vegetables



    For more details, visit the Description of PACKit Modules page.

    Usage of PACKit modules:

    Modules are designed to be used independently, or in combination with others;

    For example, for a fresh fruit producer from Zimbabwe exporting to European markets, the customized PACKit would include modules on:

    • Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
    • Paper and Board and plastics
    • Zimbabwe packaging supply chain audit
    • EU import regulations
    • Transport and distribution
    • Printing, packaging and marketing cross cutting 
    • The writing style is concise, easy to understand, and supported with useful infographics (schematic diagrams, graphics, charts and visuals).
    • PACKit can be integrated with other ITC packaging publications, like the Glossary of Technical Packaging Terms or the Transport Packaging Fitness Checker.
    • Modules can also be used in combination with other ITC training programmes such as Supply Chain Management or Export Marketing and Branding.
    • PACKit ideally complements ITC’s programmes for sector upgrading

    Each PACKit module is structured along similar lines:

    • A brief overview of the subject area, including the main packaging-related features of its world market and distribution channels.
    • A substantial discussion of the export packaging issues, e.g. selection of appropriate packaging, types of packaging used, relevant packaging materials and alternatives, packaging security, standards, environmental impact, eco-labeling, and procurement.
    • Coverage of legislation and regulations related to health, safety and the environment in the context of WTO agreements and the importing countries requirements.

    A concluding discussion on the impact for developing countries, with recommended approaches for exporters.


    ITC networks with more than 100 leading packaging institutions in the world including the World Packaging Organization and the International Association of Packaging Research Institutes.

    To achieve sustainable development objectives it is essential to nurture, empower and mobilize networks of local business support institutions. ITC partners with various types of organizations and business development service providers, including private consultancies, trade support institutions, training centers, technical institutes, universities and NGOs. These can be sector-specific or cross-cutting. A key focus is the active management of this global network to continue providing high-quality business development services to end beneficiaries.

    There are three different levels of partnerships arrangements with ITC:

    Associate Partners

    These are institutional partners that have been identified as suitable focal points for coordinating export programmes. Such partnerships can be ad-hoc, with the institution delivering a programme successfully but not being interested in running further programmes, but can also be longer term partnerships.

    Licensed Partners

    These are partner institutions that license specific products and services from ITC’s portfolio and commit to wide-scale dissemination of these in their national or regional context.

    Strategic Partners

    These are licensed partner institutions that run a range of ITC products and services and offer additional services, such as updating and upgrading programme contents or providing training and qualification of advisors on ITC’s behalf. Strategic partners can act as regional hubs to replicate ITC’s export development programmes, in close coordination with ITC professionals and international experts.

    For more information on how to join ITC’s network of Packaging partners, please contact us.


    ITC is currently providing technical assistance and support for the following packaging related projects.

    1. Promoting Intra-regional Trade in Eastern & Southern Africa
      • Strengthen the laboratory facilities of Zambian Bureau of Standards with equipment to carry out package testing
      • Setting up a Packaging Service Centre for the Small Industries Development Organisation of Tanzania to provide design, advisory services and training of SMEs
      • Establishment of a Packaging Information Centre for SIDO
      • Design and sourcing of high quality packaging for the SIDO Honey Processing factory at Singida, Tanzania
    2. EIF Lesotho Agriculture Productivity and Trade Development Project: Procurement of package testing equipment and development of traceability and barcoding services in Lesotho.
    3. Sector Competitiveness and Export Diversification Project – The Gambia: Design of high quality packaging and sourcing of packing machines to improve the quality of cashew nut, groundnut and sesame in the Gambia.
    4. Programme EDEC efficacement défini et mis en œuvre - Maroc: Strengthen the capacity of TSIs and export advisers to provide advisory services on packaging in the agrifood, seafood and leather sectors
    5. Amélioration de la compétitivité des exportations des filières vanille, d’ylang ylang et girofle – Comores: Build the capacity of TSI to provide advisory services on packaging to producers of vanilla, ylang ylang and cloves in Comoros

    For more information please contact us.

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