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COVID-19 Pandemic Soars the Growth of the Disposable Protective Clothing Industry

The outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic has triggered an urgent need to mass produce personal protective clothing for preventing transmission of virus. However, the world is experiencing a lack of coordination and equal access to personal protective equipment (PPE) owing to the surging demand for PPE kits mainly from the medical sector. The pandemic resulted in shortages and price escalations in PPE, particularly those required to safeguard frontline healthcare workers. As per the estimations by the World Health Organization (WHO), the global healthcare sector will require around 76 million gloves, 89 million masks, and 1.6 million goggles per month to provide a strong response to the COVID-19 pandemic. For meeting the estimated numbers, the PPE industry must surge its PPE manufacturing by at least 40%. Hospitals and healthcare centers worldwide are witnessing recurrent PPE shortages. Also, the global PPE market supply chain has been confronted owing to a powerful combination of mounting demand, panic buying, advertisements, and misuse of PPEs.

The Need for Disposable Protective Clothing

The demand for PPE has drastically soared in 2020, however concerns have raised over the environmental impact of manufacturing and disposal of single-use equipment, mainly masks. Hence, PPE market players are focusing on the development of sustainable or disposable PPE products.

Usually non-biodegradable plastics are used for manufacturing PPEs. These materials remain in the environment for several decades and can cause an environmental threat. Hence, PPE manufacturers are hunting novel ways to design new types of disposable protective clothing, which could significantly curb the amount of medical waste that contributes toward environmental pollution. As per a report by Research Dive, the global disposable protective clothing market is rising and is foreseen to surpass a revenue of $5,844.7 million by 2028, growing at a CAGR of 5.9% in the 2021-2028 timeframe.

For manufacturing disposable protective clothing various materials, such as polypropylene, polyethylene breathable film, polyester, polymer, and others, are used. The newest innovations in disposable protective clothing market such as double gloving, gloves with perforation indicators, disposable PPE, and others, are predicted to create massive opportunities in the disposable protective clothing market in the coming years.

Recent Trends in the Market

The competitive rivalry in the disposable protective clothing market is high. Some of the leading players in the market are 3M, Ansell Ltd., DuPont de Nemours, Inc., Kimberly-Clark Corporation, International Enviroguard, Derekduck Industry Corp., Lakeland Industries, Inc., Honeywell International Inc., Drägerwerk AG, Asatex AG., and others. The companies functioning in this market are concentrating on growing their production capacity amidst the pandemic crisis. Moreover, many government authorities, such as Indian government and Chinese government, are encouraging local clothing producers to shift their focus toward the production of disposable protective clothing to satisfy the increasing demand for PPE during the pandemic. Some of the latest developments in the global disposable protective clothing market are as follows:

  • In March 2019, Cromwell Polythene, a leading provider of polythene and plastic sheeting, launched redesigned PPE version of its Wave® range of disposable gloves at the Cleaning Show 2019, Stand C27.
  • In February 2020, Protective Industrial Products, Inc. ("PIP"), a foremost provider of hand protection and general safety products, launched a complete range of disposable ear plugs. This new product range denotes PIP's all-out foray into the production of hearing protection, especially, disposable foam ear plugs.
  • In August 2020, KARAM, a foremost Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) manufacturing company in India, introduced its 'Disposable Face Masks range' to provide protection against dust, infections, pollen, bacterial microorganisms, and smoke. Taking into consideration the coronavirus pandemic, the company has an aim to facilitate comfort, quality, and affordability to frontline industrial employees.

Future Perspective of the Market

The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly surged the consumption, demand, and disposal of single-use products such as protecting clothing, respirators, masks, and many others. However, even after the pandemic settles, the demand for disposable PPE clothing is expected to continue. Stringent safety standards and rules imposed by government authorities to guarantee protection and safety of workers & employers is expected to upkeep the demand for disposable protective clothing even in the future years.

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