Plastic Sheet Processing Market

Published - Aug 2005| Analyst - Melvin Schlechter| Code - PLS045A
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Report Highlights

  • The plastic sheet/thermoformed product market was significant in 2004 with an estimated consumption of 6.3 billion pounds. This will increase to nearly 8 billion pounds by 2009, at a 4.8% average annual growth rate (AAGR).
  • Growth in this market is driven mostly by the increasing use of thermoformed plastics, especially in the rigid packaging market led by the food industry.
  • This industry is characterized by the predominance of commodity thermoplastics led by polystyrene and including high-density polyethylene, polypropylene and PVC.
  • Significant consumption also is provided by the two major clear plastic sheet resins, polyacrylates and polycarbonate.


Plastic sheet, usually 10 mils to 12 mils in thickness, can either be extruded or cast, clear or opaque with a variety of colors and textures, and, most importantly, is the starting point for ther-moformed products that have enjoyed outstanding growth, especially in packaging.

A wide array of resins are used to produce sheet/thermoformed products. Major applications include: food and health-care packaging, building/construction products, appliances, signs/displays, automotive and aircraft products. Technology advances in both plastic sheet and thermoformed products have enhanced their respective competitive positions vis-à-vis nonplastic materials such as paper/paperboard, glass and aluminum.

This BCC study examines in detail two groups of related plastic products. They are extruded sheet and thermoformed materials in which the thermoformed plastics are made from plastic sheet. Both plastic sheet and thermoformed plastics are involved in several important applications. The report quantifies consumption of more than 10 types of plastics, either as sheet or thermoformed materials, by each of the major applications.


The report contains:


  • An overview of plastic sheet and thermoformed materials
  • Detailed information about resins used in the production of plastic sheet and thermoformed products
  • A summary of recent technological advancements in the industry
  • Analysis of the consumption of resins in both plastic sheet and thermoformed products by each major application
  • Identification of key suppliers of plastic sheet and thermoformed products along with their respective trade named products.



Extensive searches were made of the literature, including most of the leading trade journals, technical papers, company literature, related government publications and pertinent trade associations.

In addition, interviews were conducted with resin producers, plastic sheet manufacturers, key thermoformers and trade publication personnel to try and verify consumption, company products, key applications, market trends, etc.


Research analyst Mel Schlechter has over 30 years in the chemical industry, and specializes in plastics market research. He has been with BCC for over 10 years. Mr. Schlecter holds B.S. degree in chemistry, an M.S. in organic chemistry and an M.B.A. in marketing.

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