At a time when signs of robust economic growth can be somewhat hard to find, the material handling industry, and particularly the conveyor sector, keep rolling along nicely.
At the annual spring meeting of the Conveyor Equipment Manufacturers Association (CEMA), Daniel Fannin, vice president of business process at Emerson Industrial Automation and chair of the group's statistics committee, reported double-digit growth for the conveyor business in 2011. Fannin also projected continued growth in 2012, albeit at a slower pace.
According to Fannin, the conveyor industry reported sales of $8.5 billion in 2011, which equates to a 28-percent increase in units shipped over 2010 figures. CEMA's statistics committee tracks revenue based on the dollar value of the products shipped to customers.
The conveyor industry also outpaced the strong growth rates of the material handling sector overall, which reported gains of about 17 percent.
While Fannin's committee projects the growth rate will slow somewhat in 2012, it will still be notable. He said that projections call for year-over-year 10-percent growth in the dollar value of equipment shipped. That would equate to about $9.3 billion.