Food packaging growth and technological development is intrinsically linked to the growth of, and demand for, supermarkets. This growth is driven by changing lifestyles and the move to convenience foods, where packaging forms an essential part of the product offering. Industrialised societies - Europe, US, Japan etc - have led this trend over the last 30 years. However, other areas of the world are catching up, notably China and Asia, but poor infrastructure still makes supermarket supply all but impossible and there is little or no demand for anything beyond the most basic food packaging. In this month's briefing just-food looks at food packaging in the modern world, focusing on technologies, the environment and what the future has in store.