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INDA annual report benchmarks North American nonwoven capacity, production and trade

The report provides a view of North American supply, including the key metrics of capacity, production and operating rates.

30th June 2016

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Cary, NC

Packaging, Medical/Hygiene

The report provides a view of North American supply, including the key metrics of capacity, production and operating rates, in addition to regional trade. The 51-page report offers 12 tables and 25 figures.

“This report is the benchmark for North American capacity, production, and supply information. It brings the clearest view available of the all-important supply/demand balance in the major nonwoven process categories. This is the only report we are aware of that publishes an industry operating rate; an essential element for our members’ strategic planning and business decisions,” said Dave Rousse, INDA President.

New findings

From 1990 to 2015, North American nonwovens capacity has increased an average of 5.4% per year, outpacing US real GDP, which grew at 2.4% per year over the same period. During this time the industry has more than quadrupled in size, adding over two million tonnes.

In 2015, North America’s nonwoven capacity increased to 2.98 million tonnes. Suppressed investments due to the Great Recession, (2007-2009), subdued capacity growth through the end of 2014, producing a minimal additional 110,000 tonnes in North America, at an annual increase of 1.3 percent. “It appears accelerated growth in North American nonwoven capacity investments will continue through the next few years,” said Brad Kalil.

Imports and exports are an important consideration in supply, INDA reports. North America receives imports (294,000 tonnes) comparable to 10% of the region’s capacity; while exporting 163,000 tonnes. Contrary to industry assumptions, imports from overseas into North America are not substantial, accounting for — on a net/net basis — just 4% of the regions nonwoven capacity.

Improving quality of data

The report — and the INDA Quarterly Market Pulse and monthly Price Trends Summary — are provided to the 360-plus INDA member companies and associates as part of their membership.

“It is INDA’s objective to continue to provide and improve the quality of data and industry information. I continue to be pleased with the increasing participation of nonwoven producers completing the survey and our ability to identify new or previously unreported nonwovens capacity,” said Brad Kalil, Director of Market Research and Statistics, INDA.


INDA, the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, serves hundreds of member companies in the nonwovens/engineered fabrics industry in global commerce.

Since 1968, INDA events are helping members connect, learn, innovate, and develop their businesses. INDA educational courses, market data, test methods, consultancy, and issue advocacy aim to help members succeed by providing them the information they need to better plan and execute their business strategies.

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