South Korea Mulch Films Market - Forecast, 2023 - 2030

Report Code: CMR 1577 Report Format: PDF + Excel


The South Korea mulch films market size is forecast to reach USD 402.5 million by 2030, after growing at a CAGR of 4.64% during 2024-2030. Mulch films are widely used in agriculture and horticulture, especially in regions with dry or cold climates. The key forces of market growth include rising agricultural product demand, a scarcity of cropland, and an increase in greenhouses to boost production and cut costs. 

The shrinking available land for agricultural usage and the lack of available labor are the key factors driving South Korea’s Mulch Films market during the forecast period. For instance, the amount of arable land in South Korea has decreased from a share of 21.8% (21.6 million hectares) of total land in the early 1950s to 21% of the total land (20.7 million hectares) in the 2000s. According to the results of Statistics Korea's 2022 arable area survey, the national arable area was 1,528,000 ha, a decrease of 1.2% (19,000 ha) from the previous year. The decrease in agricultural land area is the result of the expansion of urban areas and a decline in agricultural population due to industrialization.

Report Coverage

The report “South Korea Mulch Films Market– Forecast (2024-2030)”, by IndustryARC, covers an in-depth analysis of the following segments of the South Korea mulch films market.

By Type: Organic Mulching (Straw Mulch, Grass Clipping Mulch) Inorganic Mulching (Black mulch, Photoselective mulches (Brown or Green),  Clear mulch (transparent), Plastic Mulch), Biodegradable Mulching, Others
By Material: Polyethylene (PE), Low-density polyethylene (LDPE), High-density polyethylene (HDPE), Polyvinyl chloride (PVC), Linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE), Polylactic acid (PLA), Poly (Butylene Adipate-co-Terephthalate) (PBAT), Poly (Butylene Succinate) (PBS), Polypropylene (PP), Others
By Crop: Vegetable Crop, Orchard or Fruit Crop, Others
By Thickness: 15 microns to 30 microns, 100 microns to 150 microns, Others
By End Use Industry: Agriculture, Horticulture

Key Takeaways

●  The expanding interest in greenhouse applications, which is directly linked to expanding environmental concerns, is driving a spike in demand for mulch films. In agriculture, greenhouses are being used more and more to produce controlled settings for growing a variety of crops. They provide defense against harmful weather, pests, and illnesses, enabling agriculture to take place all year round. According to USDA, Korea has an active greenhouse farming culture, accounting for about 12% of agricultural output by value.

●  Mulch film demand has surged in recent years because of the advent of smart agriculture. Mulch films are used to cover the soil surrounding plants to assist in retaining moisture and reduce the quantity of water required for irrigation and pesticide application. In February 2021, aiming to bring new technologies to the agricultural industry, South Korea's ICT ministry declared that it will invest 386.7 billion won ($353.3 million) over the next seven years to construct smart farms.

●  The industry is viewed as quite promising when it comes to investing in biodegradable materials, and Korea is tightening regulations to reduce the use of single-use plastic. Over the forecast period of 2023–2028, this is projected to create more and more chances for the mulch film market. For instance, the bioplastic industry was estimated by the Korea Investor Relations Service (KIRS) to be worth $28.8 billion in 2020. It is anticipated to increase at a rate of 15% annually to $34.3 billion in 2021 and $40.9 billion the following year.  

By Type - Segment Analysis

Inorganic Mulching type dominated the South Korea mulch films market in 2023. This is owing to the propensity of plastic mulches to either reflect or absorb sunlight, changing the temperature of the soil beneath it depending on its hue. Black mulch is currently the most often utilized mulch film in South Korea. It can provide the producer with significant benefits and is among the least expensive to produce. Black plastic mulch films have the potential to heat the bed by absorbing and transferring solar heat to the soil.

By Material - Segment Analysis

Polyethylene (PE) dominated the South Korea mulch films market in 2023. Polyethylene (PE) resins offer industry-best stiffness and toughness combinations at a low processing temperature.  The new PE platform, which makes use of the most recent advancements in polymer science, offers chances to simplify film compositions and designs while enhancing film performance, conversion efficiency, and durability in comparison to the market's current agricultural benchmarks. 
South Korea's reliance on imported raw materials, particularly from Japan, has been lessened by the localization of plastic greenhouse cover films by a governmental agricultural technology development organization. To lessen dependency on Japanese goods, a state organization localizes glasshouse plastic cover film.

By Crop - Segment Analysis

Vegetable Crop accounts for the largest share of the South Korea mulch films market in 2023. This is mainly due to the high demand for mulch films in vegetable cultivation. Koreans enjoy the so-called Asian vegetables such as Chinese cabbage and radish, which are different from vegetables largely produced in Europe or America. The sector of vegetable crops can be influenced by government regulations and incentives that support sustainable agriculture and the use of contemporary technologies, such as mulch films. For instance, the Korea Agricultural Policy Plan for 2018–22, which was released, outlined four primary policy objectives: bolstering the income safety net; promoting sustainable agriculture through innovation; increasing food safety throughout the supply chain; and expanding rural welfare.

By Thickness - Segment Analysis

100 microns to 150 microns dominated the South Korea mulch films market in 2023. This is because the thickness range is suited for most crops and climates, and it provides a good mix of durability, performance, and affordability. In comparison to thinner films, thicker mulch films are typically more resilient and long-lasting. Due to this, they can be ideal for long cropping cycles or regions with challenging environmental circumstances. If the soil has a high concentration of stones, a 150-micron mulch coating is necessary for orchard crops where a longer lifespan is required.

By End Use Industry - Segment Analysis

Agriculture dominated the South Korea mulch films market in 2023. The demand for high-value crops such as fruits, vegetables, and flowers has been increasing in South Korea due to the changing consumer preferences and dietary habits. Mulch films can help create favorable microclimates and soil conditions for these crops, which require more intensive and precise management. 

The agricultural industry in South Korea has progressed from traditional agriculture to smart agriculture. Innovations in agriculture, such as greenhouse farming, will drive the South Korean market for mulch films. For instance, the four smart farm crops—strawberry, melon, tomato, and paprika—are the focus of one of the new government's economic policies for the next five years. As of 2020, only 149 farms had implemented smart farms in their fruit and field crop fields.

Drivers – South Korea Mulch Films Market

●  The Rising Environmental Concerns Promote the Adoption of Biodegradable Mulch Films.
With a growing concern for the environment and its surroundings, the use of biodegradable mulch films is expected to expand, propelling the expansion of the mulch film market with more growth opportunities in the forecast period in South Korea. Businesses are entering the biodegradable plastic business as consumers who care about the environment and regulatory requirements need alternatives to plastic. For example, in November 2021, a joint venture was established between SKC, a chemical business that is 40.64% controlled by SK Inc., Daesang, and LX International to construct a plant that would produce polybutylene adipate terephthalate (PBAT), a kind of polyester that composts. 

●  Higher Demand for Crops and Vegetable Production  
The growing popularity of high-value crops such as fruits, vegetables, and flowers, which can benefit from the use of mulch films in South Korea, is likely to drive the mulch films market. In terms of the amount of vegetables consumed per person worldwide, Korea ranks among the top countries. In contrast to other agricultural goods from Korea including grains, fruits, and meat, vegetables have an 83% self-sufficiency rate. The market for salads is growing right now, and long-term growth is also anticipated in the market for snack-type consumption. For instance, according to data from the Korea Rural Economic Institute (KREI), The popularity of salad as a one-and-done meal is rising in Korea, with its market value surpassing 1 trillion won ($855 million) in 2020. The market for fruits and salads reached 1.14 trillion won in 2020, up 21% on year from 936.9 billion won in 2019.

Challenges – South Korea Mulch Films Market

● Adverse Effect of Plastics on the Environment
Harmful chemical reactions with certain mulch films Plastics' detrimental effects on the environment will have an impact on the expansion of the mulch film business in South Korea. Initiatives from businesses and the Korean government are assisting community-based campaigns to promote the switch to reusable alternatives. For instance, In September 2021, the Korean government pledged to reduce plastic use by 60% by 2030 and to achieve a plastic-free society by 2050. Such reactions to the possibility of environmental destruction are consistent with a growing trend among young Korean consumers to prioritize gashimbi (buying satisfaction) over gaseongbi (shopping for cost-effectiveness).

● High Cost of Mulch Films
The high cost of procuring and applying mulch films is expected to stymie the South Korean mulch film business. Mulch film prices vary depending on criteria such as type, thickness, and size. Because of their eco-friendliness, biodegradable mulch films are often more expensive than regular plastic films. Mulching film prices, particularly silver and black mulching film, are expected to hamper industry expansion in the forecast period. For instance, the average selling of silver and black mulching film ranges from $1.96/kg.

Market Landscape

Technology launches, acquisitions, and R&D activities are key strategies adopted by players in the South Korea mulch films market. In 2022, the South Korea mulch films market share has been consolidated by the major players accounting for 79% of the share. Major players in the South Korea mulch films market are Ilshin Chemical Co Ltd, Samdong Industrial Co Ltd, Tae Kwang New Tec Co Ltd, SK Chemicals (Ecovance), and Samyang Corp among others.


● In July 2021, Samyang Developed New Biodegradable Plastics Using Isosorbide which is the world’s first isosorbide-based biodegradable plastic and plastic film developed by Samyang Corporation. This plastic film can be used for producing disposable plastic bags, agricultural plastic mulch films (film used for covering soil to control weeds and moisture), fishing nets, etc.

● In October 2021, Anychem Co., Ltd. developed and launched an eco-friendly agricultural mulching film in response to carbon neutrality.

1. South Korea Mulch Films Market - Market Overview
    1.1 Definitions and Scope
2. South Korea Mulch Films Market - Executive Summary
3. South Korea Mulch Films Market - Landscape
    3.1. Comparative analysis 
        3.1.1 Market Share Analysis- Top Companies
        3.1.2 Product Benchmarking- Top Companies
        3.1.3 Top 5 Financials Analysis
        3.1.4 Patent Analysis- Top Companies
        3.1.5 Pricing Analysis
4. South Korea Mulch Films Market - Market Forces
    4.1. Market Drivers
    4.2. Market Constraints
    4.3. Market Opportunities
    4.4. Porters five force model
        4.4.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers
        4.4.2 Bargaining Powers of Customers
        4.4.3 Threat of new entrants
        4.4.4 Rivalry among existing players
        4.4.5 Threat of Substitutes 
5. South Korea Mulch Films Market - Strategic Analysis
     5.1 Value chain analysis
     5.2 Opportunities analysis
     5.3 Suppliers and Distributors Analysis
     5.4 Potential Market for which patented technology can be applied
     5.5 Expected Revenue for Mulch Film Investment
     5.6 Business Strategy Development
6. South Korea Mulch Films Market – By Type (Market Size -$ Million)
    6.1 Organic Mulching
        6.1.1 Straw Mulch
    6.1.2 Grass Clipping Mulch
    6.2 Inorganic Mulching
        6.2.1. Black mulch
        6.2.2. Photoselective mulches (Brown or Green)
        6.2.3. Clear mulch (transparent)
        6.2.4. Plastic Mulch
    6.3. Biodegradable Mulching
    6.4. Others
7. South Korea Mulch Films Market – By Material (Market Size -$ Million)
    7.1. Polyethylene (PE)
    7.2. Low-density polyethylene (LDPE) 
    7.3. High-density polyethylene (HDPE)
    7.4. Polyvinyl chloride (PVC)
    7.5. Linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE)
    7.6. Polylactic acid (PLA)
    7.7. Poly (Butylene Adipate-co-Terephthalate) (PBAT)
    7.8. Poly (Butylene Succinate) (PBS)
    7.9. Polypropylene (PP)
    7.10. Others
8. South Korea Mulch Films Market – By Crops (Market Size -$ Million)
    8.1.Vegetable Crop
    8.2.Orchard or Fruit Crop
9. South Korea Mulch Films Market – By Thickness (Market Size -$ Million)
    9.1.15 microns to 30 microns
    9.2.100 microns to 150 microns
10. South Korea Mulch Films Market – By End Use Industry (Market Size -$ Million)
11. South Korea Mulch Films Market - Entropy
    11.1 New Product Launches
    11.2 M&A’s, Collaborations, JVs and Partnerships
12. South Korea Mulch Films Market - List of Key Companies 
13. South Korea Mulch Films Market Company Analysis
    13.1. Ilshin Chemical Co Ltd
    13.2. Samdong Industrial Co Ltd
    13.3. Tae Kwang New Tec Co Ltd
    13.4. SK Chemicals (Ecovance)
    13.5. Samyang Corp
    13.6. Anychem
    13.7. Serimbng Co Ltd
    13.8. JK Materials Co Ltd
    13.9. FarmHannong
    13.10. Geumseong Film Co Ltd

"Financials would be provided on a best-efforts basis for private companies"

South Korea mulch films market is forecast to grow at 4.64% CAGR during the forecast period 2023-2030.

South Korea mulch films Market size is estimated to reach USD 402.5 million by 2030

Top Companies in the South Korea mulch films Market are Ilshin Chemical Co Ltd, Samdong Industrial Co Ltd, Tae Kwang New Tec Co Ltd, SK Chemicals (Ecovance), and Samyang Corp.