raw material


Definition of raw material 

: crude or processed material that can be converted by manufacture, processing, or combination into a new and useful product wheat … is raw material for the flour mill— C. A. Koepke broadly : something with a potential for improvement, development, or elaboration perplexities are often the raw material of discoveries — Agnes M. Clerke

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Synonyms for raw material


making, material, stuff, substance, timber

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Examples of raw material in a Sentence

His experiences during the war were the raw material for the story.

Recent Examples on the Web

De Reyes acknowledged that the company will pay a small premium to get parts and raw materials to Alaska, but those prices will pale in comparison to the cost and logistical challenges of staying in the Lower 48. Author: Elwood Brehmer, Anchorage Daily News, "Startup plans to revolutionize the air cargo industry, starting with Alaska," 15 June 2018 Exports of oil, timber and other raw materials made up the bulk of Russian exports to China, while the Chinese exports mostly consisted of industrial goods, replacing the imports of Western products blocked from sanctions. Vladimir Isachenkov, Fox News, "Putin heads to China to bolster ties as US pressure grows," 6 June 2018 By processing seal hides at a commercial scale, the village has been able to sell tanned skins back to hunters and their families for use as raw material in handicrafts and clothing sold around Alaska. Zach Hughes, latimes.com, "Tanning seal hides on the edge of the world: A foothold in the global economy in rural Alaska," 2 May 2018 Improving on the discovery Researchers have taken these naturally occurring enzymes as raw material. Ian Haydon, Scientific American, "Enzymes versus Nerve Agents: Designing Antidotes for Chemical Weapons," 11 Apr. 2017 Other raw materials were procured abroad and then reworked back in Grasse. Kari Molvar, Town & Country, "The Bottled Up History of Louis Vuitton Perfumes," 3 Oct. 2016 The remaining two have invented ways to turn the stuff into carbon monoxide or methanol, which are industrial raw materials. The Economist, "$15m is available to solve a burning problem," 9 Apr. 2018 Is there potential in mining asteroids for raw materials? NBC News, "Stopping 'Armageddon': This former astronaut is on a mission to save Earth from deadly asteroids," 10 July 2018 The raw materials for demand-response programs are already in place, which is to say, there are already lots of space and water heating appliances out there in the country. David Roberts, Vox, "Most American homes are still heated with fossil fuels. It’s time to electrify.," 2 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'raw material.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of raw material

1612, in the meaning defined above

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raw milk


raw oil

Statistics for raw material

Last Updated

25 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for raw material

The first known use of raw material was in 1612

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More Definitions for raw material

raw material


Financial Definition of raw material

What It Is

Raw materials are commodities, parts or substances that are assembled or processed to form a final product.

How It Works

For example, the raw materials involved in chocolate chip cookies are butter, sugar, eggs, flour, vanilla, baking powder and chocolate.

Why It Matters

Raw materials determine the quality and cost of producing an item. Many raw materials are commodities that trade on the futures market. For many companies, acquiring raw materials at a good price makes the difference between having a profitable year and having an unprofitable year.

Raw materials may be considered unfinished goods and thus recorded as inventory on the balance sheet.

Source: Investing Answers

raw material


English Language Learners Definition of raw material

: the basic material that can be used to make or create something

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Comments on raw material

What made you want to look up raw material? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


by force of circumstances

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