Plastics industry 8th largest in U.S., new report says
The plastics industry is a key part of the American economy, the report from Plastics Industry Association said, accounting for an estimated $432 billion in shipments and over a million workers in 2019.
As the eighth largest industry in the U.S., the plastics industry accounted for an estimated US$432 billion in shipments and 1,003,000 jobs last year, according to the 2020 Size & Impact Report, an annual publication of the Washington, D.C.-based Plastics Industry Association.
Including its upstream effects, plastics industry employment grows to an estimated 1.5 million and shipments to US$549.5 billion.
In a Sept. 30 news release, association president and CEO Tony Radoszewski said that plastics “are quite economically important to communities across our country.”
At the state level, California’s plastics industry workforce is the most numerous at an estimated 79,700 workers in 2019. Ohio places second with 74,500 workers, and Texas third with an estimated 71,400. Indiana and Michigan feature the highest concentration of plastics industry workers, each with an estimated 16 plastics employees for every 1,000 non-farm workers.
“Plastics are vital, and in 2019, 79% of plastics products were used in some sort of personal consumption… toys, utensils, detergent bottles, motor vehicles, refrigerators, and more,” said the association’s chief economist Perc Pineda. “Plastics for consumer essentials like food packaging, personal, and healthcare, will continue to see healthy demand.”