The global protective fabrics market has constantly evolved through the decades to deliver occupational safety to its end users. Changing geo-political scenarios and safety standards for industries have been important to the development of this market. From militaries to manufacturing units, the demand for protective fabrics has pushed players to develop unique blends that prioritise human safety. Natural calamities and manmade hazards have both contributed to the challenging situations for the firefighters, primary responders, oil and gas workers, miners, and law and security enforcement agencies. As these remain ongoing disruptors, the demand for protective fabrics is expected to soar during the forecast years of 2021 and 2025.
Increasing Oil and Gas Exploration and Extraction Boost Demand for Protective Fabrics
According to United States Department of Labor, between 2013 and 2017, 489 workers died on the job during oil and gas extraction owing to the range of accidents. Occupational Safety and Health Administration mandates wearing the right protective gear to protect the workers from fires, explosions, and exposure to chemicals. From drilling to servicing a well, workers are engaged in highly dangerous tasks, which emphasizes the importance of protective fabrics. To cater to the specific needs of oil and gas activities, players are focussed on designing fire resistant (FR) clothing that offers effortless flexibility to move, feels soft to the skin, and provides excellent moisture permeability and breathing ability. Brands such as Nomex and Kevlar are best-known to offer excellent inherent protection for those working under stress.
High Frequency of Wildfires Raises Questions about Right Protective Fabrics
The demand for protective fabrics has also seen a rise as the number of wildfires have increased. The number of wildfires from Americas to Australia remains an unprecedented number, raising demand for protective fabrics for firefighters. Personal protective equipment (PPE) for wildland firefighters includes meta-aramid fabrics, which offers radiant heat protection and flame resistance. The primary motive of this fabric is to not ignite, melt, or drip to harm the skin further. In recent years, blend of meta-aramids and para-aramid have shown better thermal resistance, durability, and strength.
Ballistic Protective Clothing to Garner Interest With Geopolitical Tensions
In the coming five years, the demand for ballistic protective apparel is expected to see an upward trend as geopolitical tensions continue between nations across the globe. Increasing defence budgets and investments in development better protective gear for personnel are expected to boost the uptake of protective fabrics for military purposes. The bullet-resistant clothing has evolved to be lighter and flexible to allow the user better and swifter movement under extremely challenging situations. Inclusion of female force in militaries across the globe has raised a new demand for innovation and design. Military protective fabrics also include apparel for camouflage, which mimics the terrains. Uniforms are now being designed to provide chemical and biological protection as nature of war changes. Report finds that 3D textiles will find their way in to make military apparel intelligent to understand and respond to changing temperatures.
Aramid to Lead Global Protective Fabrics Market With its Superior Qualities
The global protective fabrics market includes a wide range of materials that are used in combination to offer the best possible solution. Polyesters, cotton fibre, polyolefin, polyamide, inorganic fibres, and aramid are some of popularly used fabrics for making protection gear. It offers excellent chemical resistance, preventing injury in the best possible way against flashover and chemical splashes as the fabric is 100% synthetic. The demand for aramid fabrics will remain highest over the forecast period as it is lightweight. It has been the best choice of fabric for firefighters and for those working in the military and law enforcement, healthcare, and oil and gas sectors.
Asia Pacific to Dominate as Construction Activity Picks Up
In terms of geography, Asia Pacific is expected to lead the global protective fabrics market. Increasing construction and building activities across China and India are expected to boost the demand for personal protective gears that use these fabrics. Asia Pacific is expected to be the fastest-growing regional market for protective fabrics as manufacturing gains momentum in China. Production of personal protective equipment and clothing in the country is expected to raise consumption and production in the region.
Meanwhile, North America protective fabrics market is expected to grow as the defense sector shows a keen interest in spending on state-of-art apparel. The regional market is also expected to see an upward trend as the labour laws are stringent about worker safety.
In 2021, TenCate Protective Fabrics announced a new finish completely free of PFAS chemicals for the evolving needs of ‘Emergency Response’ community. The company is working with its supply chain stakeholder to market with phased commercial availability of the product starting in Spring 2021.
Some of the key players operating in the global protective fabrics market are Kolon Industries, Milliken & Company, Tex Tech Industries, Teijin Limited, Tencate Fabrics EU, Klopman International, Loyal Textiles Mill Ltd, CETRIKO SL, and Honeywell International Inc.
Please Note: The above mentioned segmentation/companies/countries are likely to differ in the actual report as they are based on preliminary research.