The concept of raw material refers to any good whose purpose is transformation during a production process to become a consumer item. Many of the material goods require modification or transformation before they can be used by users.
In this case, the raw materials occupy the first step in a manufacturing chain, which will endure different phases until it becomes an article ready to be consumed.
Features of la materia prima
One of the main characteristics of raw materials is the absence of treatment, so that it acquires a natural state before starting to be treated by the hand of man and machines.
The best example of raw materials are the different resources that nature offers us, such as wood, minerals, etc. Therefore, we will consider as raw material the wood of the trees that once treated will end up turning into paper or the iron that is extracted from the mines and that will be subjected to an alloy process with carbon to transform it into steel.
Types of raw materials
We can find different kinds of raw materials according to their origin:
- of plant origin
- of animal origin
- of mineral origin
- of liquid origin
- of fossil origin
The production of raw materials has always been seen as a source of wealth for the territories, since in general they come from resources that are abundant and therefore lack competition. However, the development of the first large-scale industries showed the deficiencies of this class of goods, mainly the scarce value added and changes in prices.
The volatility in the price of raw materials is mainly due to the lack of resources, since in many cases they depend on natural events, such as rain or heat. To this is also added that an exploitation of raw materials sometimes requires significant investments at the beginning.