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Expanded Polystyrene Market

Expanded Polystyrene Market By Product (White, Grey & Black Expanded Polystyrene), By Application (Expanded Polystyrene For Construction, Packaging & Automotive) - Global Market Insights 2021 to 2031

Analysis of Expanded Polystyrene market covering 30 + countries including analysis of US, Canada, UK, Germany, France, Nordics, GCC countries, Japan, Korea and many more

Expanded Polystyrene Market Outlook

The global expanded polystyrene (EPS) market was valued at around US$ 16 Bn in 2020, and is expected to reach US$ 20 Bn by 2031, rising at a CAGR of 5%. Demand for white expanded polystyrene is projected to accelerate at a CAGR of 4% across the assessment period of 2021 to 2031.

Report Attribute


Market size value in 2020

USD 16 Billion

Market forecast value in 2031

USD 20 Billion

Growth Rate

CAGR of 4% from 2021 to 2031

Forecast Period


Historical Data Available for


Key Companies Profiled

  • Arkema S.A.
  • Alpek, S.A.B. De C.V.
  • Trinseo SA Sunpor Kunststoff GmbH
  • Versalis S.P.A.
  • Flint Hills Resources, LLC
  • Total S.A.
  • PJSC Sibur Holding
  • Nova Chemicals Corporation
  • Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC)
  • Kaneka Corporation
  • Atlas Roofing Corporation
  • Bewisynbra Group
  • Ravago Group
  • Styrochem

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Consumption Analysis of Expanded Polystyrene from 2016 to 2020 Vs Demand Outlook for 2021 to 2031

As per Fact.MR - a market research and competitive intelligence provider, global value sales of expanded polystyrene topped US$ 16 Bn in 2020.

Rising urbanization, industrialization, and construction activities will boost demand for expanded polystyrene. Upsurge in the demand for durable residential and commercial buildings will further foster expanded polystyrene market growth, especially in developing economies.

Increasing demand for sustainable and lightweight solutions that provide extreme durability coupled with improved thermal insulation is projected to drive the use of expanded polystyrene over the forecast period.

Furthermore, rising construction activities of durable commercial and residential buildings that can easily withstand extreme external environmental factors are expected to drive the market at 5% CAGR from 2021 to 2031.

Expanded Polystyrene Market

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What are the Key Factors Stimulating Demand for EPS?

In recent years, polymers have become extremely important as engineering materials. In terms of application, they are now successfully competing with other major classes of materials.

Expanded polymers have found renewed vigor in the construction industry. This is because of the properties of expanded polystyrene such as low thermal conductivity, low weight, mechanical resistance, low water absorption, chemical resistance, and others. Moreover, ease of handling and installation is anticipated to fuel demand for expanded polystyrene in forecast period.

Increasing inclination towards eco-friendly construction polymers has risen demand for EPS insulation in the construction sector. Various studies suggest that greenhouse gas emissions from buildings might reach an alarming rate in the near future if proper measures are not taken.

The above-mentioned factors and government measures towards eco-friendly construction materials are anticipated to fuel the expanded polystyrene market size.

Know thy Competitors

Competitive landscape highlights only certain players
Complete list available upon request

What is Adversely Affecting Sales of Expanded Polystyrene?

Polystyrene is a kind of plastic. Like other plastic, when polystyrene is littered or leaks out of supply chains it can harm wildlife and last for years and years.   Made from chemicals that come from oil and gas, styrene is one of the main ingredients and is a suspected health hazard.

Expanded polystyrene (EPS) and extruded polystyrene (XPS) are materials that resonate with the name ‘polystyrene’, or the trademark ‘Styrofoam’. Often, these polystyrene materials are used to make boxes for the transportation of products that need to have a regulated temperature; for example, to keep food warm or cool and to protect breakable items.

Expanded polystyrene foam is made of plastic or synthetic polymers that cannot be recycled. Such foam materials are being actively used in the production of high-performance protective packaging solutions.

Regulatory bodies are levying penalties on expanded polystyrene foam manufacturers in the global foam protective packaging market to limit the production of Expanded Polystyrene-based foam, also known as Styrofoam. The above factors will negatively affect the expanded polystyrene foam (EPF) market.

Which Region is a Lucrative Market for Expanded Polystyrene Manufacturers?

The Asia Pacific regional market accounted for an expanded polystyrene market share of more than 50% in 2020.  The region will continue to hold its dominance during the forecast period. This is because of growing building and construction activities across countries in this region.

Growth and expansion of automobile industry especially in the developing countries will further propel the expanded polystyrene market growth. Rising demand for expanded polystyrene from various end user verticals such as application of expanded polystyrene in packaging will further create lucrative market growth opportunities. Easy availability of low cost labour and abundant raw materials will further grab many eyeballs of the manufacturers.

The Germany black expanded polystyrene market and the U.K. expanded polystyrene-based foam market have also observed remarkable growth due to technological advancements and the introduction of lightweight & biocompatible products in the industry.

Other countries / regions that are expected to perform well over the coming years include the Canada white expanded polystyrene market and Mexico grey expanded polystyrene market.

Expanded polystyrene eps market by Fact.MR

Country-wise Analysis

Will the U.S. Remain a Lucrative Market for Expanded Polystyrene Suppliers?

The market in the U.S. was valued at over US$ 4 Bn in 2020. Rising disposable income and increasing investments in the end-use industries are likely to drive the market during the forecast period. The market for EPS in the U.S is growing significantly due to increased consumption of polystyrene in packaging, construction & buildings, and others.

The construction industry is a significant contributor to the U.S. expandable polystyrene (EPS) market share. The US$ 20 Tn U.S. economy relies on a vast infrastructure network, from bridges and roads to freight rail and ports to electrical grids and Internet provision.

The country’s market is mainly driven by increasing investments in residential construction, rising use of expanded polystyrene in the automotive industry, and growing demand for remodeling old buildings.

What are the Growth Opportunities for Expanded Polystyrene Providers across China?

By 2031, China is expected to have a market value of roughly US$ 5 Bn. China is the largest consumer in the Asia Pacific region. Due to the booming housing market and real estate demand, the construction and building industry is expected to grow rapidly, which is anticipated to increase the consumption of expanded polystyrene over the coming years.

The housing market is facing strong demand fueled by rising incomes, low-interest rates, and high levels of net migration. It is estimated that the Government of China is likely to inject more than US$ 560 Bn in housing and building constructions for the growing population.

Currently, China has numerous airport construction projects, which are either in the development or planning stage. The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) aims to construct 216 new airports by 2035 to meet the growing demands for air travel. China had 234 civil airports in October 2020, and this number is likely to hit 450 by 2035. Additionally, the government rolled out massive construction plans for the movement of 250 Mn people to its new megacities over the next ten years.

Category-wise Insights

Will the Popularity of White Expanded Polystyrene Continue Rising?

White EPS leads the market and accounted for more than 40% share of global revenue in 2020, and is projected to enjoy a growth rate of 4% during the forecast period. This can be attributed to excellent thermal and mechanical properties, easy recyclability, and non-corrosive characteristics of white EPS.

The thermal resistance of white EPS depends on the density of the finished product and does not lessen with time.

Growing use of white EPS in furniture production, sports helmets, construction, expanded polystyrene sheets, and automotive applications are fueling the demand for white EPS across regions.

What is the Scope of Growth for EPS in the Construction Industry?

Construction application of EPS is projected to reach around US$ 7 Bn by 2031. Growth of the construction industry is creating opportunities for new construction materials. The construction sector is becoming one of the largest consumers of polymer composites.

The construction industry is well aware of the challenges it is likely to face in the next millennium, and is thereby continuously seeking new solutions. This is creating opportunities for expanded polystyrene as it can resolve some of the most critical as well as common issues in constructions. Use of expanded polystyrene can facilitate the production of cost-effective and energy-efficient materials.

Innovation of existing materials, to the development of new material combinations and additional multifunctional characteristics, have benefited the players in EPS market. Concurrently, these polymer-based materials have additional properties, which are often not found in conventional materials.

Expanded polystyrene is witnessing high adoption, for consumption of grey EPS in the building & construction industry and is also mixed with ceramics and metals in order to develop essential engineering materials that are used for constructing buildings, bridges, and other infrastructure.

What is the Impact of COVID-19 on Expanded Polystyrene Demand?

The COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted demand for expanded polystyrene and sales of grey EPS. This was mainly due to large-scale closures, shutdowns, and restrictions on travel.

Rapid spread of coronavirus has had a major impact on global markets as major economies of the world were completely shut due to this pandemic. As a result, the EPS manufacturing process slowed down and suddenly all the consumer markets started to show zero interest towards purchasing any goods.

One of the major difficulties, market is facing the shutdown of all kinds of International transportation. Global crisis for all sectors including building and construction, which was hit by slowing demand in production and exports had slowdown the market for expandable polystyrene market.

Also, several international production and manufacturing businesses were affected significantly and this had a direct impact on expanded polystyrene manufacturing. But slowly, with passing time and decreasing rates of positive cases of COVID-19, the polystyrene market is regaining its position and stabilizing.

Competitive Landscape

Top expanded polystyrene manufacturers are primarily aiming to carry out strategic acquisitions, collaborations, and launch innovative products. Strategic steps such as acquisitions help companies in expanding their reach in the market in terms of both, product portfolio and geography.

  • In 2019, Styropek Mexico began a collaboration with one of its EPS suppliers to collect pentane emissions from the EPS bead pre-expansion and stabilization process.
  • In June 2019, BASF SE increased its global production capacity of Neopor (a graphite polystyrene rigid foam and a type of EPS) by 40,000 metric tons per year. The capacity addition was done at two production sites, namely, Ulsan (Korea) and Ludwigshafen (Germany).

Key Segments Covered in Expanded Polystyrene Industry Research

  • Product

    • White Expanded Polystyrene
    • Grey Expanded Polystyrene
    • Black Expanded Polystyrene
  • Application

    • Expanded Polystyrene For Construction
    • Expanded Polystyrene For Packaging
    • Expanded Polystyrene For Automotive

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Revenue from the global expanded polystyrene market is valued at around US$ 16 Bn at present.

From 2016-2020, sales of expanded polystyrene registered a CAGR of 3%.

Rising urbanization and industrialization, especially in developing economies, will propel demand for expanded polystyrene.

Major EPS manufacturers are BASF SE, Arkema S.A., Alpek, S.A.B. De C.V., and Trinseo SA Sunpor Kunststoff GmbH, as per ratings on the basis of market share, market reach, clientele, etc.

Demand for expanded polystyrene is anticipated to rise at around 4% CAGR in the Latin American region through 2031.

The European market for expanded polystyrene is projected to expand at a low CAGR of 2% during 2021 – 2031.

The U.S., China, U.K., India, and Germany are expected to drive most of the demand for expanded polystyrene.

White EPS remains the leading segment and is expected to hold a share of 40%.

As per Fact.MR’s projections, demand for expanded polystyrene is expected to reach a value of US$ 20 Bn by the end of 2031, with sales expected to register a CAGR of 5%.

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