In 2016, the breathable films market was estimated at USD 1,706.1 million and it is projected to reach USD 2,551.5 million by 2022, registering a CAGR of 7.1% between 2017 and 2022. Polyethylene, polypropylene, polyurethane, and other thermoplastic elastomers are the types of polymers or polyolefin used in the production of breathable films. In terms of value, polyethylene-based breathable films dominated the market with a 55.6% share of the overall market in 2016. The market size for this segment was USD 948.7 million in 2016. Polyethylene-based breathable films are mainly used in hygiene products, including baby diapers, adult diapers, and sanitary napkins. The polyurethane-based breathable films segment is projected to register the highest CAGR of 9.2%, in terms of value, during the forecast period as disposable surgical drapes, gowns, and gloves are replacing reusable ones. Disposable surgical drapes and gowns provide a higher barrier to body fluids and blood. Increase in awareness about the advantages of using disposable drapes and gowns are expected to drive the market for breathable films.
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Browse 104 market data Tables and 38 Figures spread through 143 Pages and in-depth TOC on “Breathable Films Market”
What are the opportunities in untapped markets with lower penetration rates?
The penetration level of hygiene products in developing countries is still very low. Countries with large population and high birth rates such as China, India, and Indonesia currently have very low penetration rate. However, demand is expected to grow significantly with increase in per capita income, growing awareness regarding health and hygiene, and changing consumer preference. There is a big prospect for growth of hygiene products and breathable films in emerging countries such as China, India, and Indonesia. In China, the overall penetration rate of baby diapers is only 16%. In India, the penetration rate is only 2% to 5%, whereas the birth rate is almost 1.6 times than that of China. Hence, being the second-most populous country with a significant GDP growth rate, there is enormous potential for the market in India. With the increasing middle-class population and improving purchasing power, the penetration of baby diapers and other hygiene products is expected to increase significantly. Indonesia has a relatively higher penetration rate in the baby diapers market than China and India, though the penetration rate is still below 20%. The baby diapers market in Indonesia is expected to grow at a double-digit CAGR in the next few years.
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What are the challenges caused by cultural barriers?
Although the breathable films market is poised for growth in the next five years, certain issues pose a challenge to market growth. Overcoming these challenges may ensure double-digit growth for the breathable films market. The feminine hygiene market in the US and Europe is mature with a high penetration rate. On the other hand, emerging markets provide opportunity for growth in this area. Attractive as they may seem, the issue is to overcome the misconceptions surrounding menstruation, which is considered as a disease/taboo in developing countries. The challenge remains to educate and uplift women’s social status so that they can gain access to hygiene products without difficulty.
Baby diapers, which use breathable films, can pass vapor in and out of the diaper, thus controlling odor build-up. This property of breathable films makes them superior to non-breathable films, which cannot control the urination/defecation odor. In countries such as Japan and South Korea that have high hygiene standards and among the world’s highest diaper change rates, breathable diaper is the product of choice. On the other hand, in the emerging economies of APAC, Latin America, and the MEA, price is still a major determinant for diaper choice.
In addition, the use of baby diapers is very low in developing countries. Substitute products such as cloth diapers, which can be reused, are preferred over disposable diapers. There is a strong need for raising awareness among people regarding the benefits of using hygiene products over following conventional methods.
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