Global Countertops

As Quoted In Stone-Ideas.com

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This study analyzes the global market for residential and nonresidential countertops (also called benchtops or worktops in some parts of the world), including kitchen, bathroom, and other (e.g., laundry and bar) countertops for the new construction and remodeling markets. In this study, countertops are defined as countertop surfaces, as well as edging and backsplash, but not countertop materials used as wall coverings.

Countertops

Countertops used in applications other than residential and nonresidential buildings – such as in recreational vehicles, ships, and boats – are excluded. Surfaces installed on tables, rolling utility carts, and other furniture are also excluded from this study.

Historical data (2008, 2013, and 2018) and forecasts for 2023 and 2028 are provided for countertop demand by material, market, and room in square meters on a select country-by-country basis. Global demand by material is also provided in dollars.

Demand and prices for countertops are measured at the installation level.

Engineered Quartz

Engineered quartz (also called engineered stone or artificial stone) is a material comprised of natural aggregates, such as chips or flakes of quartz, with polymer resin binders, and pigments. While the basic formula for engineered quartz calls for a mixture of 93% stone and 7% resins and pigments, manufacturers vary this formula to meet their own aesthetic, performance, and cost needs. Thus, engineered quartz includes between 90% and 95% natural stone aggregate. Because of this, countries rich in natural stone resources, including Spain, Italy, and China, are often also significant producers of engineered quartz, as its production provides a use for leftover stone pieces.

Granite, Marble, & Other Natural Stone

Natural stone countertops are made from rock that is quarried and fabricated into countertops. High-quality stones suitable for countertops must have relatively consistent veining and color patterns, few if any surface imperfections, and low porosity.

Laminate

Laminate countertops are made from sheets of high-pressure laminates (HPL) bonded to medium density fiberboard, plywood, or particleboard substrates. HPL sheets are generally composed of papers, fabrics, metal sheets, or other materials which, combined with thermosetting resins, are fused together at high temperatures and pressures. The most common type of general purpose HPL is made from two layers of melamine formaldehyde resin-impregnated cellulose paper and decorative overlay bonded to five layers of phenolic resin-impregnated kraft paper.

Solid Surface

Solid surface countertops are made from sheets of solid surface materials. Solid surface material sheets are produced from a blend of about 50% acrylic, polyester, or blended resins, with the remainder of the blend consisting of mineral filler, colorants, stabilizers, UV light absorbers, and cross-linking agents. Sheets of solid surface materials are formed by casting these materials into an open or closed mold and then curing them in the open air, in steam baths, or in ovens.

Solid surface materials with an acrylic resin base are more resistant to UV radiation and can be more easily thermoformed than those made with polyester resins, which are generally less expensive. Sheets made with polyester resins have a more translucent appearance, but can be brittle.

The most commonly used filler is alumina trihydrate (ATH), a material that is refined from bauxite ores. ATH is a white powder that imparts such characteristics as translucency, fire retardancy, and resistance to water, stains, chemicals, and impact.

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