Plastic Products Manufacturers

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Current Conditions, Industry Structure, How Firms Operate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 7,550 plastic product manufacturers in the US process plastic materials and produce parts and finished goods for a variety of end uses. Product categories include packaging material; fabricated shapes and plates; polystyrene foam products; urethane and other foam products; bottles; plumbing fixtures; and resilient floor coverings.

Volatile Raw Materials Costs

Conventional plastic is a petroleum and natural gas byproduct and the cost of plastic or resin is affected by variability in the price of crude oil.

Cyclical Demand

Because plastic products are commonly used in a wide variety of industries and goods, economic conditions can affect demand.

Industry size & Structure

A typical plastic products manufacturer employs about 85 workers and generates about $30 million annually.

    • The plastic products manufacturing industry consists of 7,550 companies that employ 618,800 workers, and generates over $228 billion annually.
    • The industry is fairly fragmented with the 50 largest firms representing just 32% of industry revenue.
    • Primary end-use markets include packaging, consumer and institutional, and building and construction. Other markets include transportation, electrical and electronics, furniture and furnishings, and industrial machinery.
    • Individual companies may specialize according to end-use, process, or material. Many companies may act as suppliers to OEMs, such as auto or aircraft manufacturers.
    • Large companies include Berry Plastics, Pactiv Evergreen Corporation, and Graham Packaging.
                                Industry Forecast
                                Plastic Products Manufacturers Industry Growth
                                Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                                Recent Developments

                                Mar 27, 2024 - Employment Fell, Wages Rose in 2023
                                • Employment by plastic products manufacturers fell 3% in December compared to a year ago after rising 7.2% in the previous annual comparison, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Average industry wages continued their largely steady climb in 2023 to $24.01 per hour in December, a 3% year-over-year rise to end the year pennies shy of their peak in September. Producer prices for plastic products manufacturers have been trending downward since August of 2022 amid an overall decrease in demand as supply chain issues eased.
                                • Europe’s share of global plastics production is shrinking amid rising output from China, according to an annual report released by Plastics Europe. Between 2006 and 2022 Europe's share of global plastics production fell from 22% to 14% while China’s share increased from 21% to 32% over the same period. North America accounted for 17% of global plastics production in 2022 (down from 24% in 2006) while the Middle East had a 9% share, according to the report. While Europe’s decline is linked to China’s rise, it’s also due to an increase in imports from the US in recent years. If the current trend continues, according to the Plastics Europe report, “Europe will become increasingly dependent on imports.”
                                • The numerous changes to state packaging laws taking effect this year will impact makers of plastic products, Packaging Dive reports. Legislative changes in about a dozen states include bottle bill expansions, new recycled content requirements, bans on plastic grocery bags, and PFAS in food packaging. California’s expanded bottle bill affects plastic beverage containers including “difficult to recycle” wine packaging including boxes, bladders, pouches, and similar plastic containers for a 25-cent refund. The state expanded the application of the California Beverage Container Recycling and Litter Reduction Act to any size container of 100% fruit juice and any size container of vegetable juice. Bans on single-use plastic bags provided by retailers take effect in Colorado and Rhode Island. Food packaging containing PFAS is prohibited in Hawaii, Maryland, Minnesota, and Washington. Illinois allowed restaurants or retailers to fill or refill consumer-owned containers with ready-made or bulk food as of Jan. 1.
                                • A landmark truth-in-labeling law in California will prohibit companies from placing recycling symbols on products that are not widely recycled in the state, The New York Times reports. The new law, which takes effect in fall 2025, will affect many plastics that carry the “chasing arrows” symbol, like soda cups and yogurt containers, that are rarely recycled – specifically those without a 1 or 2 on the package such as milk and soda bottles, the only plastics said to be reliably recycled. The bill's supporters hope it will motivate makers of plastic packaging to switch to more sustainable materials, while the industry argues the focus should be on improving recycling rates by educating consumers and expanding recycling infrastructure, NYT reports.
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