Different Types of Industry

Industry can be divided into three main categories. Recently Tertiary industry has been sub-divided into a fouth type.

The Video below explains the four types of industry

Primary Industries

  • Extract raw materials (which are natural products) from the land or sea e.g. oil, iron ore, timber, fish. Mining, quarrying, fishing, forestry, and farming are all example of primary industries.

Secondary Industries (sometimes referred to as Manufacturing industry)

  • Involve the manufacture of raw materials, into another product by manual labour or machines.
  • Secondary industries often use assembly lines e.g. a car factory.

Tertiary Industries (sometime referred to as Services industry)

  • Neither produce a raw material nor make a product.
  • Instead they provide services to other people and industries.
  • Tertiary industries can include doctors, dentists, refuse collection and banks.

Quaternary Industries

  • Involve the use of high tech industries.
  • People who work for these companies are often highly qualified within their field of work.
  • Research and development companies are the most common types of businesses in this sector.


All of the companies are linked in one way or another. For example:

  • The raw material cotton is extracted by primary industries
  • The cotton may then be turned into an item of clothing in the secondary industry.
  • Tertiary industries may advertise the goods in magazines and newspapers.
  • The quaternary industry may involve the product being advertised or researched to check that the item of clothing meets the standards that it claims too.
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