Aerosol industry status quo

640px-Aerosol by Piccolo NamekIt’s been 85 years since the first patent was filed for an aerosol dispenser and today they are widely used around the world for both personal and household products.

Besides being incredibly versatile, safe and efficient, aerosol containers are fully sealed, enabling the contents to remain fresh for extended periods of time. In addition, all empty aerosol cans are completely recyclable.

Locally, more than 200 million aerosol products are used annually, and the South African Aerosol Manufacturers Association (AMA) expects that, as more people get to know of the benefits of aerosol dispensers, this number will continue to grow.

Aerosol safety

According to the AMA, ‘in the more than 50 years of aerosol use worldwide, only a minimal number of consumer-related accidents have occurred – mostly as a result of misuse and abuse rather than malfunction. In South Africa alone, nearly 2 billion of these indispensable items have been produced and sold in this time.’

In accordance with universal standards, the AMA – of which most aerosol producing companies in the country are participating members – recommends that all local aerosol producers ensure that their products are 100% pressure tested during the manufacturing process. The association actively encourages and promotes safety in the workplace in line with its Manufacturing Code of Practice, in an effort to ensure that these world standards are adhered to.

Local statistics

In the last year, the local production of aerosols once again grew on a year to year basis. In 2011 the figure achieved was 240.57 million cans (229.2 million in 2010), equating to a growth of 4.96 per cent.

Imports also rose by 21.005 million and the total market grew by 5.13 per cent to from a local perspective in personal care, deodorants (8.9 per cent) and hair care grew substantially. In home care, air fresheners and polishes experienced strong growth.

Aluminium aerosol cans industry breaking records

Worldwide, manufacturers of aluminium aerosol cans also reported a new production record in 2011 with some 6.6 billion cans produced. Average market growth over the past six years has been almost eight per cent a year and is proof of the extraordinarily high esteem the aerosol can enjoys among customers and consumers as an aesthetically appealing, user-friendly and sustainable form of packaging.

In Europe, where the annual per capita consumption is already about 11 aerosol cans a year, growth in 2011 was remarkable: a good ten per cent. Demand in the North American market, with its annual per capita consumption of nine cans, remained stable. In South America, numerous boom years with double-digit growth were followed last year by single-digit growth.

The outlook in this region continues to be favourable particularly in view of the fact that per capita consumption in emerging countries like Brazil is a modest three cans and thus offers potential for development.

The same is true for the growth markets of Asia where a considerable increase is expected in future given that demand continues to be solid and the annual per capita consumption is currently as low as one can (China) or even less (Indonesia, South Korea).

Deodorants were again the driving force for the market success in 2011 and accounted for the lion’s share, with about 48 per cent of overall production. The markets for hair sprays and hair mousses, which together account for about 20 per cent, also remained stable. Additional growth was also achieved in the categories household products, pharmaceuticals and food, which with production shares of about ten, six and three per cent respectively still have potential for further development. ‘The sector is very pleased with the results obtained in 2011,’ sums up Aerobal President, Takaaki Takeuchi.

‘The order situation at the beginning of 2012 is also gratifying and utilisation of production capacities remains high. The need to cope with increasing costs for raw materials, energy and labour around the globe represents a real challenge for the industry in 2012.


Picture courtesy of PiccoloNamek


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