Kickstart: Waiting to see which way consumer demand swings

The pandemic has changed a lot of consumers’ buying habits.Just recall early 2020 when there was a toilet paper shortage, along with a lack of both cleaning supplies (like hand sanitizer) as well as the packaging for those supplies.The Clorox Co. saw demand skyrocket for its bleach and cleaning products in 2020. A year later, , and the company said in an earnings release Aug. 3 that it would miss expected numbers.Sales dropped in three of its four business units “primarily to the deceleration of shipments from peak levels during the COVID-19 pandemic, including more rapid-than-expected deceleration in the Health and Wellness segment,” the Oakland, Calif.-based firm said.But the rising Delta variant may still cause another spike in consumer purchasing.The Progressive Grocer reports that a survey of 1,000 people by Inmar Intelligence on July 30 — just a few days after renewed guidance to wear masks indoors hit — showed that 70 percent of those people are .Supply chain shortages also are contributing to those plans, as consumers report problems finding their preferred brands, Progressive Grocer writes.Trex Co. Inc. in Winchester, Va., that will allow it to increase production of composite decking at the site by 70 percent to meet surging demand.Now it’s boosting capacity even more.”By the end of the year, we will install incremental decking capacity within the new Virginia facility that will further increase our production capability and improve our cost position,” CEO Bryan Fairbanks said in an earnings call with analysts.The company has not announced the cost of the expansion but said it is part of a capital spending plan it announced earlier.”This gives us a couple of years of capacity,” Fairbanks said. “If the market continues growing at this level, it will probably be a little bit shorter of time.” I may be a bit behind the curve on this, but apparently inflatable trash cans have been making some major league appearances in professional baseball this year.Back when the season first started, fans of teams playing against the Houston Astros began pitching the novelty cans (and occasionally real ones snagged from stadium concessions) onto the field. The cans are linked to a sign-stealing scandal that hit the Astros along with a new nickname from opposing fans: the Trashtros.In onto the field during games, forcing officials to halt play to collect them. During games between the Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers this week, there were “quite a few novelty trash cans,” wrote.This week’s games may just be a sign of what’s to come, Times reporter Scott Miller noted.”By the time the final boos had faded … one could dream of a Dodgers-Astros World Series rematch come October. It would be terrific news for sellers of novelty garbage cans, and the crowds this week — 52,692 and 52,724, the two largest in baseball this summer — would be of interest to Major League Baseball.” Do you have an opinion about this story? Do you have some thoughts you’d like to share with our readers? Plastics News would love to hear from you. Email your letter to Editor at Staying current is easy with Plastics News delivered straight to your inbox, free of charge. Subscribe to Plastics News Plastics News covers the business of the global plastics industry. We report news, gather data and deliver timely information that provides our readers with a competitive advantage.Customer Service:

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