Growth will be strongest in China, estimated at 12% between 2011-16 but every world region will enlarge with NAFTA estimated at 3.3%, Europe at 5.9%, Japan at 1.2% and the Middle East at 7.7%.
In North America, short life applications represent 70% of the market, by tonnage and 68% by market value while in Europe, hygiene applications represent 55% of tons. Within the baby diaper market, sales continue to be sluggish despite increased promotional activity and bulk packaging as manufacturers increase differentiation in the market. Diaper components continue to move toward lower weights to reduce units and shipping costs. Meanwhile, feminine hygiene pads continue to trend thinner. In the wipes market, Holmes predicts more industry consolidation. Other trends will be a continuation of interest in flushable wipes and a resurgence of airlaid pulp and wetlaid technologies.
In Europe, hygiene applications represent 55% of disposable applications and wipes account for 28% whereas the durable market is much more fragmented.
Moving toward Europe, China represents 68% of this market while other countries like India, Japan, Korea and Taiwan only contribute 4-10% each. Many of these markets, Holmes says, have tremendous opportunities for growth and could easily follow the same growth projectory already seen in China during the next decade or so.
Held at the Intercontinental Hotel in New Orleans January 23-26, Vision attracted more than 400 members of the global nonwovens industry. Among the highlights of the event was the annual Visionary Awards competition, which recognizes nonwovens excellence in consumer products. This year’s winner was the Stomp ‘N Go Stain Lifting Pad from Bissell Homecare.
Next year’s Vision conference will be held January 29-31 at the Hilton Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL.