U.S. demand for wipes is expected to expand 3.6 percent per year through 2018 to $2.9 billion. Improving economic conditions will support increasing demand for wipes used in both consumer and industrial markets. Increased consumer spending will promote the use of higher value, more task-specific wipes in the consumer market, and accelerating manufacturing activity will fuel related wipes demand in the industrial market.
“The market will continue to see ongoing introductions of new or innovative wipes,” notes analyst Katherine Brink, “although the number of product introductions is expected to slow due to the large variety of wipes already available on the market.” These and other trends are presented in "Wipes," a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based market research firm.
The consumer wipes segment accounts for the larger share of overall wipes demand. Overall consumer gains will be restrained by the sluggish pace of the dominant and mature baby wipes segment, which accounted for 78 percent of the consumer market volume sales in 2013. In contrast, products such as personal hygiene, pre-moistened facial cleansing, disinfecting, and wet floor care wipes are expected to see rapid gains. Growth in these segments will be fueled by rising market penetration as consumers increasingly incorporate these products into their routines. Advances will also be driven by consumers who will return to more expensive, task-specific wipes after they downgraded during the recession-plagued 2008-2013 period.
Growth in the industrial market through 2018 will be spurred in part by the Environmental Protection Agency’s passage of the Wiper Rule in July 2013. This rule allows solvent-contaminated disposable wipes to be labeled as non-hazardous solid waste, decreasing the total financial burden of using disposable wipes and making disposable wipes more competitive with reusable, laundered shop towels. Concerns about cross-contamination stemming from healthcare-acquired infections (HAIs) and harmful food bacteria such as E. coli boosted sales of disinfecting wipes in the healthcare and foodservice settings during the 2008-2013 period.
Source: The Freedonia Group, Inc.