EDANA, a global association serving the nonwovens and related industries, has disclosed the results of the annual nonwovens industry survey. Providing a comprehensive overview of the sector, the latest statistics demonstrate the industry’s drive and durability.

In 2017, nonwovens production in Greater Europe increased in volume by 4.3% to reach 2,544,450 tonnes with a total estimated turnover of around €7,869 million (+5.6%). Total European Union output is now close to 2 million tonnes. 

Jacques Prigneaux, EDANA’s Market Analysis and Economic Affairs Director elaborated “we continue to see the expected variances within the EU region. Although some established players like France and the Benelux countries were at a standstill, many pushed on from last year with Greece, Romania, Czech Republic, Slovenia, the UK and Ireland all witnessing growth. In Greater Europe as a whole, the standout performers were Turkey, posting a double-digit growth rate, and Russia, where growth exceeded 9%.”

Divergent trends were also observed between the various production processes. Wetlaid production recorded the most important growth rate (+10.2%), mainly due to newly installed lines going fully operational in 2017. This type of web-formation now represents 9% of nonwovens produced in Europe. Short-fibre airlaid nonwovens production increased marginally by 1.3% in 2017. The production of polymer-based nonwovens (spunmelt and assimilated) recorded significant growth of 4.2% in tonnage and 4.3% in sqm. This type of fabric confirmed its leading position in the European nonwovens industry, with 41.0% of the market in weight and 65.0% in surface area. The total output of spunmelt products reached 1,056,494 tonnes (48,448 mio sqm) in 2017. Drylaid nonwovens reached 1,056,742 tonnes, representing a 3.6% increase in tonnage.

Although the primary main end-use for nonwovens continues to be the hygiene market, with a 29.8% market share by weight, significant growth areas for nonwovens were recorded in other sectors; medical (+13.2%), automotive (+13%) and electronic materials (+21%).  Nonwovens sales to the personal care wipes market, flat in 2016, increased again last year posting growth of 5.4% in tonnes and 5.7% in surface area.

Jacques Prigneaux added “the whole EDANA team would like to thank participating companies for their valued input to our annual survey. This data, combined with continuous monitoring of the industry, ensures EDANA statistics are a valuable planning and benchmarking tool for all our member companies.”

Pierre Wiertz, General Manager of EDANA said “for over 40 years, the annual EDANA statistics – the most comprehensive available –  have proved a vital source of business intelligence for our member companies, offering unparalleled insight into the industry thanks to direct input from producers and exhaustive intelligence.”

A report with a detailed breakdown of the annual statistics is available exclusively to EDANA member companies – a valued benefit of membership of the network. Members can also access comprehensive figures for 2017 through the EDANA Statistics App (available on both IOS and Android and at http://edanastatapp.org).

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