The masterbatch market has been projected to hit a value of US$10.5 billion by 2018, driven by the steady rise in demand for plastics from major manufacturing industries such as automotive, construction, packaging, and consumer goods.
Steady economic growth, the rapid pace of industrialization, increasing production of plastic products and components, packaging products and continuous penetration of masterbatch vis-à-vis competing colouring methods remain key driving forces in the market
Masterbatch is a solid or liquid additive for plastic used for colouring plastics (color masterbatch) or imparting other properties to plastics (additive masterbatch). Masterbatch is a concentrated mixture of pigments and/or additives encapsulated during a heat process into a carrier resin which is then cooled and cut into a granular shape.
Masterbatch allows the processor to colour raw polymer economically during the plastics manufacturing process.
Product innovation and differentiation is among the key strategies adopted by masterbatch manufacturers to gain a competitive edge in the market.
Key innovations which have benefited the market over the past few years include anti-shrinkage masterbatch, flame-retardant masterbatches for PP pipes and PC sheets, anti-fog masterbatches for food packaging, anti-microbial and odor managing masterbatches, and masterbatches for biopolymer and biodegradable resins.
The focus is also on developing eco-friendly products that reduce drain of natural resources and minimize need for landfills.
Packaging represents the largest end-use market for masterbatch. Manufacturers of consumer products are increasingly seeking packaging materials that facilitate low cost production, and ensure effective storage, transportation.
According to recent research, 'Masterbatch: A Global Strategic Business Report,' the automotive industry represents one of the fastest growing end-use markets for masterbatch with a projected compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.9% forecast through 2018.
While the US and Europe still account for a major share of demand, Asia-Pacific and Latin America are spearheading global growth. Growth in Asia-Pacific is led by rising demand for sophisticated raw materials and products among the region's plastic processors. Lured by the region's favorable prospects, several producers are expanding their presence in Asian countries to benefit from low-cost structures and growing local demand for plastics and packaging.
For more information on the masterbatch market, see the latest research: Masterbatch Market
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