US$1 billion hat and cap industry is gearing up for
increased demand as more overseas buyers shift their
sourcing to the country's nearly 3,000 export
suppliers. The lifting of US quotas on cotton and
polyester hats and caps is also a factor behind
steadily growing demand.
In 2004, total outbound shipments increased 22.7
percent from 2.7 billion to 3.4 billion pieces. The
US and the European Union are the country's top
One of the biggest challenges facing China's
labor-intensive hat and cap industry today is the
increasing cost of production. Higher material
prices and rising worker salaries pushed total
manufacturing and operating costs up by as much as
30 percent last year.
are some of the key trends we see in China's
hat and cap industry:
|The majority of hat and cap
makers will be significantly increasing
capacity to meet overseas demand. Most
suppliers are building new factories or
expanding facilities, while smaller
companies are looking for more companies to
subcontract production to.
|Increasing production costs
will continue to be an issue of concern for
hat and cap makers in China. While about
half of the suppliers are keen on keeping
export prices stable in the next 12 months,
the other half will definitely raise quotes.
|OEM production will
continue to drive exports for the next few
|The US and EU will remain
the country's major destinations for hats
and caps, while the Middle East and Asia,
Japan in particular, are emerging markets.
|Sports caps will continue
to dominate exports because they are the
easiest to produce. Apart from this, sports
caps are more versatile and can be used for
promotional purposes, sports or as a fashion
Suppliers in China export three types of hats and
sports caps and visors, fashion hats and
caps, and winter headwear. These are also the scope
of this report.
Almost all hat and cap manufacturers produce
sports caps, and there are some that specialize in
the line. More than 70 percent of suppliers featured
in this report produce all three kinds of hats and
caps for export, and more than 50 percent have
sports caps and visors as their main product line.
The Products & Prices section in this report
discusses the main features of each hat and cap type
and their price ranges. It also explains the
differences between low-end, midrange and high-end
products in each product category.
Product development and design focus are
discussed in the R&D/ Design section, while the
Materials & Components module details the main
fabrics used by China makers.
The Manufacturing section lists the key steps in
hat and cap production and how these differ in
small, midsize and large companies.
And more... To see the full Executive Summary