Demand in the USA for adhesives and sealants will rise 2.2%/yr to 9.8bn lbs in 2017, valued at US$11.9bn. Gains will be driven by an improved outlook for major adhesives and sealants markets such as paper packaging, motor vehicles, and building construction, following the recession-plagued 2007-2012 period. Demand will also benefit from trends toward greater use of adhesive bonding compared to alternative joining technologies, such as mechanical fasteners, in product assembly applications. However, advances will be limited by trends toward high solids formulations and lower application weights, which will reduce the total volume of adhesives and sealants consumed, and by market maturity and sluggish growth in a number of key applications. These and other trends are presented in Adhesives & Sealants, a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc.
Natural adhesives and sealants will remain the largest product type through 2017, accounting for nearly 40% of demand by weight. However, natural products will also see the weakest gains going forward, as the bulk of demand consists of low value starch adhesives used in corrugated cardboard production, a highly mature and slow growing application. The most rapid advances are expected for reactive adhesives and sealants, fuelled by the rebounding manufacturing market, as well as by product substitution trends toward higher value materials. Hot melts will also see healthy gains, as their amenability to fast processing speeds will promote opportunities in the packaging market, while their lack of volatile organic compound (VOC ) emissions will continue to make hot melts an environmentally preferable option.