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1 Market overview

1.1 Definition and scope of study

A series of procedures for creating pre-determined shapes from a block of stone is known as stone cutting. To obtain the intended result, it is mostly a craft effort that mixes old methods and technological innovations. Cutting occurs after the stone has been quarried and, in certain cases, industrially processed, but before it is set in structures or streets in the natural stone industry's value chain. Historically, to work the stones, you need a set of chisels, most of which are made of steel and come in a variety of shapes to suit your demands. There are two ways to carve stone: direct and indirect. Direct carving entails using chisels to work the stone's surface, carving it in both full and empty regions. Indirect, on the other hand, entails a carving made on the stone block of an existing model, with the most projecting elements of the stone block removed using a plumb line. The stone block chosen for future processing must have a uniform, compact surface free of veins or fissures, as these flaws could jeopardize the project's completion. Nowadays, many machines have been realized to facilitate the stone cutting, but in many countries it is still a craft job. 

Being a niche market, it is very difficult to estimate the global market value and the CAGR, but it is known that a hyper fragmented market and that each country has its own traditions.

In Italy, without considering the artisans who work with the hand chisel, there are about 250 small and medium-sized enterprises in the sector that adopt traditional and new technologies. Italy is a country of ancient traditions in the working and cutting of stone; just think of all the artistic and real estate assets present, many of which are the heritage of humanity. The areas of Italy most concentrated on the processing of stone and marble are located near Carrara, near Volterra, near Brescia and Matera. In terms of volume, in 2018 the production of cut and processed stone in Italy was about 6 million tons. Domestic consumption stood at 2 million tons. 

The stone cutting market is constantly evolving, despite its origins in millenary know-how. Today, it is fueled not just by stone's ecological and aesthetic value, but also by the increased productivity made possible by the advent of cutting robots and three-dimensional modeling tools.

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