Since 1930, the year the Gypsum Association began collecting industry statistics, the demand for gypsum board in the United States has increased almost 6,000 percent. Today, more than 21 billion square-feet of gypsum board are shipped each year in the United States and Canada.
To put that quantity in perspective, consider this: If the yearly production of gypsum board was placed end-to-end in a four-foot wide strip, it would circle the earth’s equator nearly 40 times.
Rising demand for gypsum board can be attributed to its versatility as a building material, the growth of home ownership in North America, and a steady increase in non-residential construction.
The gypsum board industry’s contribution to the economies of the United States and Canada are illustrated by the following facts and figures:
- The United States is the world’s largest producer of gypsum board.
- U.S. manufacturers shipped 20.5 billion square feet of gypsum board in 2013. Approximately 950 million square feet were exported.
- By 2013, gypsum board sales exceeded $3 billion annually. As the economy recovers and homebuilding numbers rise, gypsum board sales are increasing again.
- More than 97 percent of homes constructed in the United States along with countless hospitals, schools, office complexes and other buildings require gypsum board in construction.
- In December 2013, the Commerce Department reported that private residential construction, hit an annual pace of $352.6 billion, the highest rate since June 2008. Find the latest stats.
- According to National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) each new home creates an average of three jobs for a year and generates about $90,000 in tax revenue.
- A typical gypsum production plant employs over 100 people, often putting people to work in rural areas where jobs are scarce.
- In every U.S. state, the gypsum industry directly supports thousands of manufacturing jobs—and thousands more in sales, shipping, delivery, and construction. The economic impact of a single gypsum plant is significant, for example:
- When operating at peak capacity, a gypsum plant built in conjunction with scrubber units at a Pennsylvania power plant accounts for 800 direct jobs and draws just over 1,000 people to the region. The same plant accounts for $4 billion in economic output, nearly $1.8 billion in Gross State Product, and over $200 million in new revenues to the state.
- In just one year, a new plant in northern Kentucky contributed $323.4 million to state and local economies, raised household earnings $58 million, and created nearly 1,400 direct and indirect jobs. Local governments gained over $10 million in tax revenues. Gypsum manufacturers operate more than 65 plants in the U.S. and Canada, most located near the source of the gypsum or adjacent to a coal-fired power plant the source of synthetic, or Flue Gas Desulfurized (FGD) gypsum. Learn more about FGD Gypsum.