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The global protective gloves market size was valued at USD 12.37 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 35.20 billion by 2027, exhibiting a CAGR of 11.7% during the forecast period.
The growing awareness about workers’ safety and the increasing occupational hazards in mining, healthcare, construction, chemical, oil & gas, and manufacturing industries shall fuel the protective gloves industry growth. About, 18% of all concrete injuries are from punctures, cut, and lacerations. Most of the workplaces that involve the handling of sharp edge materials such as metal, abrasion, and glass materials have led to a rise in product adoption.
Supportive regulatory guidelines to minimize the occupational risk across various industries may aid in the expansion of the global industry and provide a strong business outlook to the manufacturers. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, about one million personnel go to the hospital with hand injuries every year, and about 110,000 hand injuries, that may result in loss of time. The foremost step in choosing an appropriate glove is to identify the specific occupational hazard and the right gloves to be used in any hazard. Proper selection of the glove material is also imperative in averting various injuries or hazards.
Increasing Demand for Disposable Gloves in Healthcare Industry during COVID-19 to Add Impetus
A protective glove is designed to keep the hands safe from hazards such as cuts, chemical burns, abrasion, infection, crushing, or bio-hazard contact. Medical gloves are personal protective equipment used during medical procedures and examinations to protect the wearer or patient from the spread of infection or disease.
Medical gloves are disposable and include chemotherapy gloves, surgical gloves, and medical gloves for treating chemotherapy agents. Disposable gloves are used mostly in the healthcare industry. These gloves are worn to avoid cross-contamination between patients and healthcare personnel. They are also used for general protection of the hand when taking care of different sensitive things in a medical setting.
The demand for medical gloves is increasing due to the COVID-19 outbreak. They are recommended by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for patients who are confirmed or suspected coronavirus positive. Also, the CDC explains that non-sterile disposable exam gloves used for routine patient care in healthcare settings are suitable for dealing with patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 virus. When providing care to suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients, extended length gloves are not required according to CDC guidance.
However, the FDA has not approved, authorized, or cleared any medical gloves for specific prevention or protection against the COVID-19. The growing awareness in the healthcare sector about disease prevention and customer well-being is projected to boost the market. Furthermore, the increasing awareness about the health and safety initiatives associated with patient treatment and emergency response accidents will also drive demand for safety gloves in the healthcare industry.
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Protective Gloves are Creating More Sustainable Model in the Market
Most of the PPE manufacturing industries are gaining more sustainability in their operational performance. Effective conservation practices mainly reduce business risks and operational costs. Currently, PPE manufacturers are using materials derived from fossil resources such as polyethylene, polyester, polyamide, and others for producing gloves. Moreover, in the future, they may use biopolymers for disposable PPE and other gloves made of natural fibers such as bamboo, linen, and hemp. Turning bamboo into a fiber offers sustainability, as these gloves are made of environment-friendly materials. Manufacturers are partnering with research companies for additional sustainability initiatives. For instance, Kimberly-Clark implemented a glove under the “take-back” program. Gloves are segregated at the point of use, and the manufacturers sent them to a recycling partner who then converts the gloves into purple park benches. This process has helped Kimberly-Clark to achieve zero waste goals and increase the revenue globally. Gloves need to be purchased and produced less often, thus reducing the carbon emission from the delivery and manufacturing process. Companies are also developing biodegradable disposable nitrile gloves, mainly designed to make the gloves more attractive. Hence, a more sustainable glove may reduce the company’s overall glove use, environmental impact, and the amount of waste produced.
Workplace Safety Regulations Are Supporting Market Growth
The rise in the working population due to rapid growth in the healthcare, oil & gas, chemical, food processing, and manufacturing industries is likely to create lucrative growth opportunities for the market. The industrial sector has become highly advanced, but it still poses a high accident risk in the workplace. The human hand is one of the most used tools in almost all industries, improper attention or care of which may often lead to drastic results. Thus, safety gloves help protect against mishaps such as heat, cold, contact dermatitis, various communicable diseases, and sharp objects.
The imposition of strict government regulations has made it mandatory for manufacturers to mandate safety measures for workers’ security to restrict occupational hazards or mishaps. Strict regulatory norms in the U.S. and Europe are mainly followed in the manufacturing companies to avoid any workplace hazards, wherein even the people in top management are focusing on implementing precautionary measures at the workplace. The governing authorities of several nations worldwide have enforced regulations suitable for occupational security. For hand protection, there is no ANSI standard but the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommends that proper gloves selection is based upon the tasks to be performed in the industrial setting and construction and performance properties of the glove material used. According to OSHA, about one-fourth of the work injuries involves fingers and hands. OSHA also found that around 70% of the workers suffering from hand injuries do not wear safety gloves during working hours. OSHA also stated that wearing proper safety gloves is one of the most effective hand protection safety programs which reduced the hand injury risk by 27%.
Medical gloves are used to protect the wearer from the spread of infection or illness during any medical examinations or procedures. Thus, medical gloves are considered to be an infection control strategy. Most of the gloves are regulated by the FDA including surgical gloves, medical gloves, and examination gloves. Surgical gloves are subject to strict medical standards of the Medical Devices Directive (MDD).
Rapid Growth In Construction Industry Shall Promote Market Growth
A growing number of workers’ in the construction industry, coupled with an increasing number of fatality cases worldwide are the factors contributing to the production of safety gloves. Construction employee's hands are usually exposed to various hazards on the job site. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, around 110,000 hand injury cases each year results in the construction fatalities. Where 70% of the injuries are sustained by the workers by not wearing gloves and about 30% of injuries occur due to inappropriate and ill-fitting gloves. According to the National Safety Council, some of the glove types used in construction sites are cotton and fabric gloves which keep the hands clean and protect against abrasions and minor cuts, while some are coated fabric gloves that protects from moderate liquids and chemicals. Kevlar gloves are cut and abrasion-resistant and provide protection against both cold and heat, and leather gloves protects from abrasions, cuts, and heat and are used for welding and construction purposes. Furthermore, companies are innovating new product development to expand their business portfolio. For instance, in August 2019, DuPont Safety & Construction launched its hand protection portfolio, Tychem and Kevlar sleeve, and glove solution to expand its business in the Indian market.
Skin Allergies Due to Latex Material to Hinder Market Growth
Natural rubber latex comes from the rubber tree sap, Hevea brasiliensis, which is found in Southeast Asia and Africa. Latex is the most widely used component in many dental and medical supplies. These include disposable gloves, syringes, dental dams, catheters, stethoscopes, bandages, dressings, and airway & intravenous tubing. Latex is also found in various consumer products such as handbags, rubber toys, athletic shoes, and others.
Rubber and the healthcare industry workers are at more risk for developing serious allergic reactions to latex. About one in 10 people working in the healthcare sector suffer from latex allergies or sensitivities. Latex allergy symptoms include itching, runny or stuffy nose, and hives. It can cause asthma, symptoms of wheezing, difficulty in breathing, and chest tightness. Usually, the symptoms begin a minute after exposure to latex products. Latex allergies further cause food allergies. Allergic skin problems can occur from direct contact with the allergic latex protein present in the latex glove products. Symptoms include itching, swelling, and redness of the skin. To avoid such allergies, many hospitals have switched to non-latex or protein latex gloves, which may create lucrative opportunities in the market.
Disposable Gloves to Account for the Major Share Owing to Increased Demand From VARIOUS end-user Segments
In terms of type, the market is segmented into disposable and reusable. Disposable gloves are further segmented into chemical handling gloves, sterile gloves, general-purpose gloves, surgical gloves, and others. Durable gloves are further segmented into mechanical gloves, chemical handling gloves, thermal/flame retardant gloves, and others.
Disposable gloves dominated the market and may continue so during the forecast time period owing to the growing product demand in medical, automotive, oil & gas, chemical, food and beverage processing, and pharmaceutical industries. Rising awareness about employee safety & health along with the increasing concerns regarding skin diseases mainly in the industrial area shall foster the industry trend. Technological innovation, accompanied by the availability of customized glove designs catering to specific businesses may have a positive impact on the market. Strict government regulations regarding the safety of the doctors and other hospital staff may accelerate the demand for these gloves in the healthcare, research laboratories, and pharmaceutical industries. As per health experts, disposable gloves made of nitrile rubber or latex can offer protection against coronavirus.
Chemical safety gloves usually protect hands from greasy and oily substances in many occupational, health & safety, and home applications. Chemical resistant glove materials include leather, latex, vinyl, nitrile, neoprene, and other materials used for various end-use industries. Water resistance, improved grip, and anti-impact are the key properties boosting the overall product demand. Most of the companies are investing in advanced materials for manufacturing chemical safety gloves to provide better chemical protection and as these are fabricated and to be used in cold weather conditions, thus promoting the durable gloves market share.
Natural Rubber to Hold the Major Share in the Market Owing To Its Physical Properties
In terms of raw material, the market is segmented into natural rubber, aramid fiber, nitrile, neoprene, polyurethane, vinyl (PVC), and leather gloves. Natural rubber accounted for the major protective gloves market share in 2019. The increasing demand from automotive, food processing and manufacturing industries shall support the growth of this segment owing to its durability, high dexterity, fitness, and comfort properties. Rubber gloves are mainly biodegradable, antibacterial, and antimicrobial. The lightweight property of natural rubber enhances its tactile sensitivity, making it ideal for applications that require dexterity. It is highly elastic and poses chemical resistance while handling harmful chemicals in the laboratory. Also, the product is decomposable, making it environment-friendly and cost-effective, thus benefitting the market in terms of growth.
The nitrile gloves segment may witness a significant growth rate during the foreseeable timeframe as these gloves are designed to provide hand protection to the employees engaged in various application industries to help protect the wearer from developing latex allergies. Rising product awareness in several manufacturing industries due to strong government norms has fueled the product demand. Gloves that are produced for medical purposes must go through tests conducted by the FDA, thereby augmenting the demand for nitrile safety gloves segment.
Neoprene is a synthetic rubber compound. Chemical resistant neoprene gloves are used to protect against hydraulic fluids, alcohols, gasoline, alkalis, and organic acids. They offer less resistance to punctures, snags, cuts, and abrasions making them suitable for handling wet and slippery materials safely.
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Growing Demand For Safety Gloves In The Healthcare Industry To Aid Market Expansion
In terms of application, the market is segmented into healthcare & medical, manufacturing, construction food & beverages, oil & gas, mining, and others. Healthcare & medical segment accounted for the major share due to the increasing number of COVID-19 cases worldwide. Currently, the usage of surgical gloves and medical gloves is increasing among the healthcare workers such as doctors, nurses, and paramedical staff to reduce the contamination risk of the coronavirus.
While handling chemicals, the workers must protect their hands. As per OSHA, chemical resistant gloves are made with different kinds of rubber such as natural, nitrile, neoprene, fluorocarbon, and butyl; and plastics such as polyethylene, polyvinyl alcohol, and PVC. These materials are blended and laminated for better performance and used in the chemical sector. Rapid expansion of the chemical industry owing to the increasing demand for petrochemical and petroleum products will drive the protective gloves market. Chemical gloves usually protect inorganic & organic acids, hydrocarbons, alkali, and other harmful chemicals.
The food & beverage industry will witness a significant growth rate during the forecast period as it comprises of a wide range of risks that needs proper assessment and consideration while ensuring the worker’s safety. Risks and hazards associated with the industry include high temperatures in the bakeries industry to low temperatures in frozen and chilled products.
The safety gloves used for food production and processing applications must be manufactured in such a way that the substances released do not pose any human health risk. Foodservice gloves are mainly certified under the FDA Title 21 CFR Part 177, stating that the glove components must comply with the FDA regulations and consist of “Substances generally recognized as safe (GRAS) for use in food or food packaging. Vinyl gloves are the most used glove in the food processing and handling industry in the U.S.
The mining segment may witness substantial growth during the forecast period. Occupational fatalities and injuries are common incidences in the mining industry. According to the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA), about 24 mining workers died on their job in 2019, including 11 coal miners and 13 were non-metal or metal miners. Additionally, as per MSHA, about 70% of the mine accidents in the U.S. are related to using heavy machinery and other equipment at the worksite. Underground mining operations pose a severe risk to the worker’s health and safety. Today, most of the glove manufacturers are improving glove designs, using breathable and lighter weight fabrics, where these materials offer better puncture and cut resistance, thus driving the market in the mining industry.
North America Protective Gloves Market Size, 2016-2027 (USD Billion)
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North America safety gloves market size was valued at USD 4.68 billion in 2019 owing to the increasing awareness about the well-being as well as laws mandating the use of safety gloves in different industries. Strict regulatory guidelines regarding the worker's health security has resulted in the product adoption in the region. The National Safety Council (NSC) and the U.S. Department of Labor promoted the usage of the protective measure in high health risk-prone segments to avoid any kind of accidental health damages. ANSI/ISEA 105 ("American National Standard for Hand Protection"), rates protective gloves on a consistent numeric rating structure for thermal, mechanical, chemical, and other types of gloves. These regulations are mandatory in the key industries to avoid any accidental loss which in turn is accelerating the safety gloves market in the region. Also, a rise in the incidence of different pandemics such as Coronavirus, Ebola, swine flu, and others have fueled the usage of disposable protective gloves demand.
Asia Pacific market is driven by factors such as increased awareness regarding the safety issues in the workplace, an increase in raw material prices, transportation costs, and growing innovation from various glove manufacturers. The increasing healthcare industry in China, India, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia and Japan has led to technologically advanced solutions development for increasing the well-being in the medical or healthcare sector. Increasing drug discovery initiatives among various biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies will augment the regional growth. Top Glove Corp Bhd, a Malaysian based medical glove manufacturer, has a production capacity of 200 million synthetic and natural rubber gloves a day. But the recent pandemic, COVID-19 has led the company to product shortage as the demand for protective gloves is increasing from the U.S. and Europe. Top Glove has added new machines and the company’s monthly gloves sales ramped up by 180%.
Europe's market size is estimated to show significant growth accredited to the policy framework that has been set by the European Union. Most of the manufacturers must use PPE gloves which in compliance with the European Regulation 2016/425/EU. Eurofins offer testing and expert services for compliance with EN ISO 374-1 which sets the requirements for the certifying chemical protective gloves. Growing industry expansion has propelled the need for safety gloves protecting the workers from a chemical burn, metal cuts, and others in their daily work routine. Also, the governing authorities have imposed strict laws suitable for workplace safety, which is likely to drive the regional market growth.
Companies Forming Strategic Alliance to Gain Competitive Edge in Market
The market is highly fragmented and competitive owing to the presence of a large number of regional and international manufacturers. The five major key players operating in the industry are Ansell, Top Glove, Honeywell International, 3M company, and Hartalega. Most of the industrial participants are expanding their business by forming alliances such as partnerships, acquisitions, joint ventures, and new product launches to improvise their business and product portfolios in the value chain.
In December 2019, Protective Industrial Products, Inc. acquired Boss Glove and Safety Business. This acquisition will allow PIP to fully integrate the consumer side of Boss Glove and Safety Business within the PIP’s Retail division, West Chester Protective Gear.
Producers and contract manufacturers are mainly responsible for the glove production. Most of the glove brands have their industries in countries where the labor cost is comparatively low. Also, manufacturers and distributors are taking responsibility for sourcing more recyclable and sustainable materials for use in the end-use industries to produce more environmentally friendly products. Furthermore, manufacturers are adapting to various standards with different legislation which will drive the overall business without compromising the health and safety of the workers. Accidents involve huge losses in terms of legal issues, lives, costs, infrastructure damages, work disturbance, and reimbursements to the families. To reduce such incidents, companies are focusing on managing safety solutions by implementing precautionary measures thus boosting the product demand.
An Infographic Representation of Protective Gloves Market
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The safety gloves market report provides a detailed analysis of the market and focuses on key aspects such as leading companies, product types, and leading applications of the product.
Besides this, the report offers insights into the market, current trends and highlights the key industry developments. In addition to the aforementioned factors, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the growth of the market over the recent years.
Value (USD Billion)
By Raw Material
Fortune Business Insights says that the global protective gloves market size was USD 12.37 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 35.20 billion by 2027.
In 2019, the North America market value stood at USD 4.68 billion.
Growing at a CAGR of 11.7%, the market will exhibit steady growth in the forecast period (2020-2027).
The disposable gloves segment is expected to be the leading segment in this market during the forecast period.
Workplace safety regulation in construction, mining, healthcare, and other industries is driving the growth of the market.
3M, Top Glove, Honeywell International, Ansell, and Hartalega are major players of the global market.
North America dominated the market share in 2019.
Manufacturers are using sustainable products and also increasing disposable gloves demand during the COVID-19 are expected to drive the adoption in the global market.
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