Wipe Demand Gains Through 2026 Will Be Supported by Growth in the Industrial & Institutional Market

Trends in the industrial and institutional wipes market will be a key driver of overall growth through 2026, finds a new Freedonia Group analysis.

The market for industrial and institutional wipes rebounded in 2021 following a depressed 2020 that was attributable to the COVID-19 pandemic, as the foodservice market was negatively impacted by restaurant closures, and hospitals saw the cancellation of non-emergency procedures and focused more on telehealth. Going forward, both markets will continue to grow as:

  • foodservice revenues rise and the number of restaurants and other foodservice establishments increases
  • healthcare spending increases due to an aging population and an uptick in surgical procedures

Competitive Products in Industrial & Institutional Applications

A number of products compete with wipes in the industrial and institutional market:

  • In the industrial market, rental shop towels and rags are the primary products competing with wipes. In contrast to these woven fabric alternatives, wipes can be engineered to have task specific properties – such as heat resistance, tear strength, and low lint content – which lower operating costs and increase workflow. In addition, disposable wipes minimize the risk of cross contamination and allow for more even application of fluids, thereby reducing volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions.
  • In healthcare settings, cotton swabs, pans of disinfectant solution, and launderable towels used with liquid cleaners compete with wipes, although to a lesser degree than has historically been seen since rising concerns about healthcare associated infections (HAIs) are driving tightening cleaning regimens.

Want to Learn More?

Wipes provides historical data for 2011, 2016, and 2021 and forecasts for 2026 and 2030 for wipe demand in units and current dollars (which are not adjusted to account for inflation) by product (wet wipes and dry wipes), market, and application.

Markets (applications):

  • baby wipes
  • personal care (personal hygiene wipes, facial wipes, hand cleaning moist wipes and towelettes, medicated wipes, other)
  • household care (general purpose cleaning wipes, floor care wipes, other)
  • manufacturing (general purpose wipes, special purpose wipes)
  • healthcare (patient care wipes, hard surface disinfectant wipes, skin disinfectant wipes ,other)
  • commercial & industrial (foodservice wipes, other)