Wood-Plastic Composites: Technologies and Global Markets

BCC Research
June 1, 2011
207 Pages - SKU: WA6443966
Countries covered: Global

The global market for applications of wood-plastic composites (WPCs), cellulosic plastics, plastic lumber and natural fiber composites was worth 24 lakh metric tons in 2011. By 2016, it is estimated at nearly 46 lakh metric tons and rising at a robust compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13.8%.

The market for building products is expected to experience the highest growth, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.4% during the 5-year period from 2011 to 2016. This sector is expected to be worth 17.8 lakh metric tons in 2011 and nearly 32 lakh metric tons in 2016.

The market for automotive applications is estimated at 3.5 lakh metric tons in 2011 and is expected to increase at 17.1% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) to reach nearly 8 lakh metric tons in 2016.


Additional Information

INTRODUCTION

REASONS FOR DOING THE STUDY

This is the only comprehensive global report that looks at all cellulosic-plastic combinations as well as plastics that are direct competitors in the drive to replace lumber in building and construction markets. These segments include wood-plastic composites, plastic lumber, cellulosic plastics, and natural fiber composites.

The report is timely because of environmental pressures to reduce use of timber and eliminate use of toxic chemicals that preserve timber. It’s also timely because of a separate environmental initiative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through increased use of renewable resources as replacements for plastics based on petrochemicals. This is a particularly important factor in the automotive market in Europe, Japan and the United States. A third reason for doing the study is the enormous impact that infrastructure improvements in China will have on demand for innovative materials, such as wood-plastic composites.

SCOPE OF THE STUDY

This study covers the history, current status and forecast scenario for four major products: wood-plastic composites (WPCs), plastic lumber, cellulosic plastics and natural fiber composites. Their four major applications are: building products, automotive, infrastructure and other consumer/industrial products. The building products segment is further analyzed by its major components, as related to these products, namely decking; fencing/windows and doors; and other.

In addition, the study further segments these markets by key resins such as polyethylene, PVC and polypropylene within each application and whether these resins are being used as plastic lumber or WPCs.

Other critical issues included in detail are technologies, production (e.g., compounding, injection molding, extrusion), use of additives (colorants, lubricants, coupling agents, and UV stabilizers), requisite properties required for each application, costs and pricing, marketing, competitive company strategies, distribution, product standards and testing, and the claims and counter-claims of companies producing these products.

METHODOLOGY AND INFORMATION SOURCES

Extensive searches were made of the literature including most of the leading trade publications as well as technical and government documents including trade associations. Additional information was gleaned from interviews with many of the leading participants in these three market areas.

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