Global toilet paper market driven by the Brazilian and Chinese markets

Press Release   •   Feb 18, 2013 11:50 GMT

Spending within the global toilet paper market has grown continually over the past few years and surpassed US$45 billion in 2012, an increase of 7% compared to 2011 figures.

Since the dawn of time, people have found nifty ways to clean up after the bathroom act. The most common solution was simply to grab what was at hand: coconuts, shells, snow, moss, hay, leaves, grass, corncobs, sheep's wool -- and, later, thanks to the printing press -- newspapers, magazines, and pages of books.

But the idea of a commercial product designed solely to wipe one's bum? That started approximately 150 years ago in the US.

Toilet paper takes the lion's share in retail tissue industry, contributing 63% of the total retail value reported by the market.

Currently, the United States spends more than $6 billion a year on toilet tissue -- more than any other nation in the world. Americans, on average, use 57 squares a day and 50 lbs. a year.

High growth rates have mainly been as a result of increasing demand from emerging markets, such as Brazil and China. Soaring commodity prices pushed up the average unit prices, and manufacturers sought to offset the extra costs of production, packaging and distribution by passing them on to consumers.

The Brazilian and Chinese markets have flattered global toilet paper growth over the past five years, diluting the impact of poor sales in most Western countries. Stagnating economies will slow down but not derail their influence on growth to 2017.

Some of the world's fastest growing consumer markets, notably India and Indonesia, do not use toilet paper for cultural/hygiene reasons, but wider exposure to AFH toilet paper could develop into retail demand in the long term.

High commodity costs pushed up retail prices over the review period, but there was also a shift into luxury toilet paper- most visibly in Brazil, where average unit prices in 2011 were almost 50% higher than in the US.

For more information on the global toilet paper market, see the latest research: Global Toilet Paper Market

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