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Air Care in the U.S. Market

By: Euromonitor International
Posted: January 12, 2009

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There is also a movement towards fragrance-free policies in workplaces, which is raising consumer concerns about fragrances and allergic reactions. Activists in San Francisco successfully banned chocolate chip cookie “scent strips” from bus shelters by stating that the “Got Milk?” advertising could cause asthma attacks and allergic reactions. Fragrances were also named “Allergen of the Year” in 2007 by the American Contact Dermatitis Society.


Air care is projected to grow by only 1% between 2007 and 2012 in constant value terms. This low forecast, in contrast to the strong constant value rise seen over the review period, will be due to saturation of the category. In addition to maturity, there are other potential forecasted threats to growth. Increasing concerns about the harmful effects of chemicals in food and personal care products are prompting some consumers to also take a closer look at ingredient labels on household care products. With many consumers pursuing a “less is more” philosophy in consumer products, shoppers are apt to try to avoid added fragrances in order to reduce chemical consumption and reduce allergenic sensitivities.

Fresh air forecast: Electric air fresheners are projected to grow by 9% in constant value terms between 2007 and 2012, reflecting a slowdown from the 2002–2007 review period growth. Electric air fresheners now represent a mature part of air care, where significant improvements in delivery mechanisms, such as adjustability, night lights, extra outlets and fans, have already been made. This does not leave much scope for further improvements, which are likely to focus on decorative elements and lighting features.

Additionally, liquid air fresheners are forecast to grow by 13% in volume terms between 2007 and 2012, from a very small base. However, volume growth will be at the expense of value growth, with liquid formats projected to decline by 5% in constant value terms. Unit prices are expected to decline over the forecasted period, as more manufacturers are expected to introduce low-priced reed diffuser formats in mass-market channels. Reed diffusers are expected to gain in popularity, as they offer an aesthetically pleasing and safe alternative to candles and electric air fresheners.

On the rise: Fragrance trends in air fresheners are moving towards “clean” scents such as citrus, water and linen. While consumers continue to be interested in comforting food scents such as apple and vanilla, shoppers are now looking for fresh scents that remind them of clean laundry or the outdoors. Tropical scents such as Hawaiian breeze allow consumers a degree of escapism and a chance to “get away” from their everyday lives. Consumers are now seeking complete odor-eliminating solutions, not just to mask unpleasant odors. Procter & Gamble has a range of extra strength odor eliminators and pet odor eliminators amongst its Febreze Air Effects range.