The use of antimicrobial textiles is a new practice from the traditional use of antimicrobial products predominantly in healthcare environments. The antimicrobial textiles market is propelled by the need for hygiene products to counter the increasing number of infections. Technological advances for the development of superior antimicrobial fabrics, high demand in Asia Pacific, and increasing end-use applications are leading to the high growth of the antimicrobial textiles market.
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The production of antimicrobial textiles involves treatment with additives during the intermediate or finishing stage of production of the fabric. The method used is dependent on a multitude of factors, which includes the final utilization of the fabric, manufacturer’s capability, and budget considerations.
The top driver of the global antimicrobial textiles market is the increasing demand for high-performance and microbe resistant fabrics for an increasing number of application areas and technological developments for the production of such textiles. The entry of a large number of local players and persistent research and development efforts for the development of active ingredients that do not pass through the skin and are not harsh on the skin are further driving the market’s growth.
Medical is expected to be the fastest-growing application segment of the market due to the rapid expansion of the healthcare industry worldwide, increasing usage of antimicrobial textiles in hospital settings, and rising consumer awareness about health and hygiene. Apparel is also expected to rise at a significant rate due to the growing demand for antimicrobial textiles for sportswear and inner garments.
On the flip side, the availability of chemicals such as triclosan that are commonly used in antimicrobial products for industrial operations could hamper the market’s growth to some extent. Moreover, strict environmental regulations in regional markets for the use of antimicrobial products that contain harmful chemicals will present growth challenges to the antimicrobial textiles markets in these regions. Fluctuations in raw material prices will further hinder the growth of this market.
Asia Pacific has emerged as one of the most promising markets for antimicrobial textiles over the past few years. The regional market of Asia Pacific has displayed the fastest growth in terms of volume as well as value and has been the focal point of technological advancements. In this region, the flourishing industrial sector, changing lifestyles, increasing demand for innovative textiles, and rise of affluent consumers are some of the major factors bolstering the demand for antimicrobial textiles. Moreover, the modernization of the healthcare industry in this region in response to the growing demand for hygienic and healthier products is further expected to boost the antimicrobial textiles market in the region.
Some of the leading companies in the antimicrobial textiles market include SANITIZED AG, Sciessent LLC, The Dow Chemical Company, Trevira GmbH, Life Threads LLC, Unitika Trading Co. Ltd., BASF SE, Microban International Ltd., Milliken Chemical, Lonza Group AG, Herculite Products Inc., PurThread Technologies Inc., BioCote Ltd., and Vestagen Protective Technologies Inc. among others.
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Due to the high degree of competition and rising threat from local players, established players in this market are focused on mergers and collaborations, partnerships, and strategic alliances to enhance their geographical presence and improve product offerings. In the next few years, established players are expected to enter into strategic collaborations with vendors in Asia Pacific and Latin America as companies strive to exploit growth opportunities in these high-potential regions.
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