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What are Crucial Factors Which Can Drive the Pulp Market in Coming Years

Pulp is an abundantly found raw material that is produced by chemically or mechanically treating cellulose fibers from various feedstock such as wood, fiber crop rags or waste paper. The final product is usually used in end-user and lifestyle products such as tissue paper, diapers, packaging, specialty paper, and other products with high absorbency characteristics. The pulp is a renewable and recyclable product made of natural and organic fibers and has a variety of applications in developing countries. This biodegradable product is eco-friendly in its application even though its manufacturing and feedstock procurement processes are not sustainable. Sourcing of wood pulp takes a toll on the environment, however, non-wood pulp is a time-consuming as well as an expensive process which is not favored by major players.

Factors That Influence The Pulp Industry Worldwide

The advent of digitalization and urbanization has led to a drastic and dramatic drop in demand for paper. However, the demand for tissue paper and sanitary pads are on a rise and have a significant impact on the lifestyle of the end-user population in both developing as well as developed countries. The tissue paper market is considered to be one of the leading markets across the globe that actively and extensively uses pulp and its derivatives.

An increasing population and the growth of population with disposable income also has a positive effect on the growth of the market for toilet paper, facial tissues, paper towels, and wipes. Additionally, the growing population and the overarching influence of the western lifestyle in the eastern countries is generating an increase in the number of potential users of SAP (Super Absorbent Polymer) as well as an emergence of indigenous players in the pulp industry. Premium and ultra-premium bathroom tissue varieties have been in high demand for the past few years and are expected to grow continuously.

Variables That Affect The Pulp Industry

The biggest and most dependable source of pulp is wood. In spite of being a renewable and consistent source, wood as a feedstock is depleting at a high rate. This has made its procurement not only expensive but also considerably difficult. Rampant deforestation is occurring to create space for housing, for practicing upcoming farming techniques, for mining activities as well as for the construction of various industrial plants. Pulp manufacturing industries are further adding to the deforestation pressure that is causing industries to adopt alternative procurement activities to produce pulp and its products. This is also resulting in a reverse forestation by pulp manufacturers and industrialists, risking biodiversity as it encourages plantation of trees that give more timber and trunk. Non-wood pulp is considered as a bad investment by the industrialists and trees of such varieties are consciously not planted for wood material.

There is a demand for pulp from emerging economies which is leading to an increase in the competition in the global pulp market. The global food and beverage industry also factor a large share of the demand as per the pulp market outlook 2018. Packaging materials, as well as packaging machinery,  are aggressively using pulp as a raw material.

There are several reasons that drive the growth of the pulp industry. Growing population, heightened ease of doing business and the advent of online retailers are encouraging the consumption of packaged goods that have a positive impact on the demand and supply of pulp.

The global market of pulp and packaging can be segmented into 3 broad categories on the basis of market dynamics. Pulp can be segmented according to its type which can be either thick walled, transfer type, processed type or thermoformed.  On the basis of its end-use, it can be segmented as being used either in the food and beverage industry, the electronics industry or the personal care industry. The worldwide geographical segmentation can be on the basis of North America, the Asia Pacific and the rest of the world. The North American market is expected to dominate the growth of the pulp packaging market, as there is an increase in demand for consumer goods such as household products, and food & beverage items.

There is a rise in the need for efficient packaging solutions that have characteristic properties of being sturdy, have a long shelf life as well as being customizable. The Asia Pacific region is, however, observing the maximum rise in the pulp industry due to growing urbanization and parallelly running development opportunities. Developing countries such as India, Bangladesh, and China are foreseeing a growth in the number of stores and the product-oriented way of doing business. This is also marking an increase in the demand for convenience foods and beverages. Stores in the Asia-Pacific region are hence, processing and packaging eatables and goods with products that actively use pulp.

The major factors affecting the rise in the pulp industry include urbanization, modernization and an increased advent of disposable income across the globe. Developed and developing countries are investing in research to come up with more sustainable and effective solutions to least affect the environment. In conclusion, the pulp industry sees a boom for the coming years.

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