Global super absorbent polymer market size was estimated at 2.07 million tons in 2014 and is likely to exceed 3.1 million tons by 2023 growing with an expected CAGR of over 5.5%. Super absorbent polymer market revenue is likely to be valued at over USD 11 billion by 2023.
Baby diaper was the leading application and accounted for more that 70% of total consumption in 2014. Agricultural applications are likely to witness highest gains with an estimated CAGR of over 5.8% by 2023 owing to superior water retention properties required for crops in rainfall/water scarce area.
Europe was the dominant region and accounted for more that 30% of SAP demand in 2014. Asia Pacific is likely to witness highest growth rates over the forecast period owing to populations expansion coupled with growing hygiene awareness among consumers.
Increasing baby diapers demand owing to growth in population and consumer awareness towards infant’s hygiene is likely to drive super absorbent polymer market growth. Global baby diapers market size is likely to exceed USD 55 billion by 2020.
Companies focusing on manufacturing baby diapers focus on product thinness to ensure optimal comfort and minimizing environmental impact. To achieve this, companies are procuring SAP with highly absorbent cores and also reducing the weight of bulkier materials such as fluff pulp. Thinner baby diaper products are gaining considerable importance in key markets of North America and Europe. Thinner products also attribute lower freight costs ensuring manufacturers to stay competitive in the global market.
Favorable regulatory norms to encourage super absorbent polymer market use in agriculture applications in water scare areas likely to support growth. The use for this application is encouraged owing to its factors such as improvement in water use & efficiency, high water retention properties, enhance soil properties and increase in crop yield.
Increase in geriatric population particularly in Japan, Germany and the U.S. is likely to drive SAP marketdemand for incontinence products. Other major application areas include construction, wastewater management, oil & gas and packaging. They are also used in manufacturing medical dresses.
Synthetic SAP based products include polyacrlyamide copolymer, sodium polyacrylate, polyvinyl alcohol copolymers, and ethylene maleic anhydride copolymer. All these products type are used in numerous applications such as diapers, adult incontinence and feminine hygiene products. Polyacrylamine copolymer is likely to witness fastest growth rate owing to properties such as non-toxicity, high water retaining and absorption.
Volatile acrylic acid price and supply deficit are likely to challenge industry participant growth. Raw material deficit in the market is likely to increase manufacturing costs and bring down profit margins. To offset this scenario, companies are investing in the development of bio-based super absorbent polymer market.
Bio based SAP is manufactured using renewable raw materials such as starch, cellulose, natural gums and chitin. Bio-based super absorbent polymers market provides environmentally sustainable alternatives to fossil based materials but also offer effective moisture retention and absorbency for applications such as baby diapering, packaging, feminine hygiene and adult incontinence products.
Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM) have launched newest generation of bio-based product such as BIOSAP, Lysorp 218 and Lysorp 220. ADM manufactures bio super absorbents for disposable personal hygiene applications.
Europe emerged as the dominant region is likely to witness moderate growth rates. North America was the second largest region is likely to witness steady gains over the forecast period. Asia Pacific, especially India super absorbent polymer market, is likely to witness highest growth rates up to 2023 owing to growth in infant population and increasing disposable income.
Japan super absorbent polymer market was dominated by adult incontinence products in 2015 and was the second largest market in Asia Pacific. Middle East is likely to witness significant growth rates over the forecast period owing to growing baby diapers demand in countries such as Saudi Arabia, UAE and Qatar.
Global super absorbent polymer market share is consolidated with few companies catering to large part of the demand. Major companies are taking initiatives to increase their production capacity and enhance product portfolio.
Key companies involved in this market include BASF, Nippon Shokubai, Evonik, Sumitomo, and LG Chemical. Other prominent companies include Formosa Plastics, KAO Corporation, SDP Global Corporation, Yixing Danson Technology and Songwon Industrial Corp. Ltd.
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