Types of Industries

The industry is the set of activities and processes, whose purpose is the transformation of finished and semi-finished materials tending to an end or use . In order to carry out the various necessary transformations, industries use human resources, machinery and structured organization methods for the proper functioning of the various processes, organizations that we can generally call companies, which can be artisanal or “industrial” properly speaking. , understanding as industrial those companies that systematically produce or transform some material or product in quantities greater than those that can be carried out by hand, (by hand or with rudimentary machinery).


types of industries

Industries have existed since ancient times since the human being has had the need to transform various materials found in nature, to make better use of them, whether for food, clothing, housing, or other purposes, as the case may be. of the textile industries that have existed since ancient times, intended for the transformation of agricultural products (for example linen and cotton), and livestock or hunting products (such as skins), to transform them into clothing that is later traded. However, the term industry is associated more with the consequent phenomenon of the “industrial revolution”, which began in the eighteenth century and has continued to the present day, with the technological changes that resulted in the acceleration of the transformation of materials into various products.

The different industries can be classified in various ways, such as by the position they occupy in the productive chain, by sector, according to the tonnage of products, according to size (number of workers and productive importance), according to the branch to which they belong .

Types of industries according to the sector (primary, secondary, or tertiary)

Basic or primary industries

They are the ones that start the production process from raw materials transforming it into semi-finished products that in turn can be processed to transform them into other objects and products, an example of this is the oil industries, which extract crude oil and the metallurgical or foundry industries. that are responsible for transforming metallic minerals into materials that can be used by the aviation, automobile, shipyard, machinery, etc. industries.

Capital goods industries

They are the ones that are dedicated to transforming the pre-made products by the primary or base industries, taking the previous example, these industries take the materials that were previously transformed into usable materials (such as metals), and use them to manufacture products such as machinery, automobiles, ships, planes, and other products that are largely destined to supply other industries such as transportation, tourism, fishing industries, etc.

The medium and large-sized industries process most of the goods, technological, food or intended for other industries.

Consumer Goods Industries

Are those that focus on the production of products (and services), intended for direct consumer consumption, such as appliances (refrigerators, televisions, computers, cell phones), clothing, processed foods (canned tuna, cheese, preserves), and wide variety of products that are purchased directly by consumers, as well as services, such as tourism services, transportation and others.

Types of industry according to the tonnage of materials used and products made.

Heavy industry

Heavy industry is understood as those that transform raw materials into semi-finished products, such as the iron and steel industries that transform metallic minerals into metal blocks and sheets that can later be used by other industries (such as the automotive industry or those that manufacture tools and machinery, as well as such as industries that provide power to other industries.

Semi-light industries

It refers to the industries that work semi-finished products and transform them into machinery, such as ships, airplanes, trains, the cement or automotive industries.

light industries

Light industries are understood as those in which the weight of the products is reduced, and they provide products and services that are purchased directly by the final consumer, since they are close to the market for which their products are destined, are examples of this such as the industries of clothing, footwear, cosmetics, processed foods, household appliances, tourist services, intrapersonal transportation, entertainment, etc.

Types of industries according to the number of workers they employ

Big industry

They are those that employ more than a thousand permanent workers.

Medium industry

Medium-sized industries are considered those that employ between fifty and a thousand employees.

Small industry

It refers to those where the number of employees is reduced to fifty or fewer workers.

Types of industries according to the extension they reach in a territory

Transnational industries

They are those that have influence in more than two countries, having as bases of their industries more than one country; They are industries such as those dedicated to the manufacture of automobiles, those of the energy sector such as oil companies, soft drink industries, and all those that manufacture some products in large quantities and are focused on markets of two or more nations, possessing a fairly wide market scope.

National industries

They are those that have a production focused on a national market, an example of which are the industries dedicated to supplying markets such as food within the borders of a country.

local industries

They are those that, due to their economic and productive extension, focus production on a local market, they can be partially mechanized industries or artisanal industries, generally they have little labor.

Types of industry according to the degree of development they have

Infant industry

It refers to the artisanal and little mechanized industries that barely obtain subsistence resources, as well as whose production is barely enough to satisfy some market demands.

Mature industries

They are the industries that have reached their maximum productive development, but that cannot advance any further, remaining stagnant due to the technology they possess, which is commonly outdated.

leading industries

It refers to those that have an expansion and increase in production thanks mainly to having updated technologies and methods, examples of this type are the telecommunications, computer and mobile phone industries.

Some of the types of industries according to the branch to which they belong

Food industry

It is the one that deals with the production of food for human consumption, examples are the dairy industries, meat processors, the wine industry, soft drinks and confectionery industries.

The dairy industry belongs to the food industries

Chemical industry

It is the one that develops and produces a diversity of chemical substances, it can be divided into various branches such as petrochemicals, or the pharmaceutical industry.

Tourist industry

It is the one in charge of providing tourist services, an example of which are transport companies such as airlines, shipping companies, buses, restaurants and hotels.

Military industry

They are those dedicated to producing various weapons and equipment for military use, including chemical, metallurgical, land and air vehicle production, shipyards, and textile industries, among others.

Forest industry

They are those that are dedicated to the exploitation of forest resources, an example of this is the wood industries.

Textile industries

They are the ones dedicated to the production of threads, fabrics, clothes and footwear.

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