Brazil's plastics industry is out to make a name for itself, and create an international niche as an alternative to Asia.
Fifteen Brazilian molders of household items displayed products for retailers from around the world during the International Housewares Show, held March 22-24 in Chicago, anxious to show specific products and overall capabilities.
We've got design, we've got manufacturing flexibility, we've got engineers, we've got the technology we've got everything from raw material production to complete products, Marco Wydra, executive manager for the Brazilian Plastic Institute's Export Plastic Program, said at the show.
While Brazil has developed a strong internal market, it has also spent the past five years trying to develop a presence internationally as well, he said.
There are 80 different companies involved in the export program, ranging from resin suppliers to consumer product companies like Coza Utilidades Plasticas Ltda. of Caxias do Sul, which was showing its line of kitchen and bathroom products made of a 50-50 blend of polypropylene and either wood or coconut fibers.
We hope to be able to start some sales in North America, said Dina Beatriz Gazola, export manager for Coza.
The natural lines have sold well in Brazil and have attracted attention elsewhere, but the molder wants to make a splash in the U.S. as well, she said.
Most of the world has ignored South America in favor of products from China and elsewhere in Asia, Wydra said. But the Brazilian industry feels that there are now opportunities for it to break through, as international buyers look for other sources and especially as Chinese manufacturers focus on their internal markets. Brazil offers the range of services buyers want, and is closer to major markets in North America, which reduces shipping times and complexity.
We have some deals that are closing already with major retailers, she said. Companies are becoming aware of what Brazil has to bring.