District Fact Sheets:


North Carolina is home to plastics manufacturers and establishments engaged in plastics processing, marketing, support and captive activities that directly employ 38,771 people. Nationally, North Carolina is ranked 9th in plastics industry employment. It is also home to a number of plastics dependent industries that use plastics to make products or provide services. Plastics and dependent industries combined employ 1.4 million people in North Carolina.

Plastics Industry Employment

Plastics Dependent Industries and Total Employment

Total Plastics Industry and Dependent Industries: 1,362,689 employees.


The plastics industry’s direct payroll in North Carolina, including captive plastic products, is $2 billion. Plastics dependent industries add another $59.5 billion to the state’s payroll.

Although some of the dependent payroll would exist without plastics, there would be less of it, because cost effective replacements for plastics are not available in many applications.


Together, plastics companies and the industries that depend on plastics contribute $16.7 billion in state and federal personal income taxes, and $7.6 billion in payroll (FICA) taxes.


Plastics industry shipments in North Carolina totaled nearly $14.5 billion in 2018 and comprised 3.2% of national shipments ($451.3 billion). Nationally, North Carolina is ranked 9th in plastics industry shipments.

State Shipments

National Shipments