Pent Up Demand to Boost Growth in Appliance Segment of Global Foamed Plastic Insulation Market

Cleveland OH, June 17, 2022 – Rising foam prices and short supply are leading to pent up demand in the appliance segment of the global foamed plastic insulation market, finds a new Freedonia Group analysis:

  • In 2020, demand for freezers and refrigerators – which had been nearing a cyclical peak – rose in many developed countries as consumers around the world sought more storage for nonperishable foods, first to stockpile and later to reduce the frequency of shopping trips.
  • Additionally, demand in the US rose along with home improvement spending, as consumers used their disposable income to upgrade their living spaces.

However, suppliers were unable to meet demand in 2020 and into 2021, as production was shut down in many parts of the world (particularly China, which continues to pursue a zero-COVID policy):

  • Disrupted supply chains and rising prices for appliances (due in part to extruded polystyrene price increases) caused consumers to further delay sales.
  • Meanwhile, appliance demand in the nonresidential market also grew, as expanding food delivery services and curbside grocery pickup programs caused retailers and restaurants to look to invest in cold storage.

As a result, demand for foamed plastic insulation used in appliance manufacturing will be strong through 2025, as pent up demand in the early part of the forecast period is released.

Global Foamed Plastic Insulation Demand to Grow 4.0% Annually Through 2025

Global demand for foamed plastic insulation is forecast to rise 4.0% per year to 9.1 million metric tons, valued at $29.6 billion, in 2025. Demand will be driven by:

  • a global rebound in construction activity from the low levels experienced in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • advances in nonresidential building construction, particularly in the Asia/Pacific region
  • increasingly stringent energy efficiency and fire safety policies throughout the world, which often call for greater insulation usage in buildings
  • rising production of motor vehicles, appliances, aerospace equipment, HVAC equipment, and industrial equipment

However, below average building construction outlooks in the US and Japan, as well as continued declines in single-family housing construction in China, will provide a check on even faster gains.

Want to Learn More?

Global Foamed Plastic Insulation, now available from the Freedonia Group, provides historical data (2010, 2015, and 2020) and forecasts for 2025 and 2030 for foamed plastic insulation demand by product (in dollars and metric tons) and market (metric tons and square meters R-1). Demand in value terms is shown at the manufacturers’ level and excludes distributor and retailer markups.


  • expanded polystyrene (EPS), including graphite polystyrene
  • polyurethane (PUR) and polyisocyanurate (PIR), including rigid board and spray polyurethane foam (SPF) types
  • extruded polystyrene (XPS)
  • small volume products (including, elastomeric, phenolic, polyolefin, melamine)


  • residential buildings
  • nonresidential buildings
  • industrial and plant equipment (e.g., machinery boilers, pipes, tanks)
  • appliances (e.g., refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, clothes washers and dryers)
  • HVAC/air distribution equipment
  • transportation equipment (e.g., motor vehicles, aerospace equipment, ships and boats, railroad equipment
  • other insulation markets (including insulated coolers and thermoses, insulated packaging, furniture, bedding, nonbuilding/infrastructure construction, and heavy machinery)