The report segments the global chitosan market by end-user application including, water treatment, food and beverage, cosmetics, and pharmaceutical and biomedical, and by geography, including APAC, EMEA, and the Americas. It provides a detailed illustration of the major factors influencing the market, including drivers, opportunities, trends, and industry-specific challenges.
Here are some key findings of the global chitosan market, according to Technavio chemicals and materials researchers:
- Emerging application from end-use industries: a major market driver
- The water treatment end-user application segment dominated the market with approximately 40% share in 2016
- APAC dominated the global chitosan market with a share of 53% in 2016
- Advanced Biopolymers, FMC Corporation, Golden-Shell Biochemical, G.T.C. Bio Corporation, and KitoZyme are the leading players in the market
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Emerging application from end-use industries: a major market driver
Growing demand for emerging applications such as agrochemicals, fuel cells, photographic products, cardiovascular diseases treatment, textiles, ophthalmology, and paper and pulp are driving the demand for chitosan. Due to an increase in demand for chitosan, there has been a rise in R&D for niche applications. Chitosan from crustacean shell, shrimps, crabs, and krills are low cost and available in abundance, which is gaining importance in various applications.
Chitosan biopolymer is used to make membrane materials for lithium batteries, ultrafiltration, and reverse osmosis. It is cost-effective and eco-friendly, and it is replacing expensive polymer-based electrolyte membranes in fuel cells. Chitosan-based membranes display good hydrophilicity, good proton conductivity, and good thermal and chemical stability. It is gaining influence as a bio-based material for electrolyte membranes and electrodes in various fuel cells such as biofuel cells and alkaline polymer electrolyte fuel cells.
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APAC dominates the market
The major drivers for the chitosan market in APAC are increasing demand for foods and beverages, pharmaceuticals and biomedicines, and cosmetics. Abundant availability of raw materials such as shrimps and craps in China, Vietnam, Japan, and Thailand has led to APAC being the largest producer of chitosan and its derivatives. Japan accounts for the major share in the chitosan market in this region. Growing use of chitosan in wastewater treatment and cosmetics are the main drivers for the chitosan market in Japan.
According to Kurva Samba Sivudu, a lead analyst at Technavio for research on bio-chemicals and bio-materials, “Major countries in this region for chitosan are China, India, Japan, and South Korea. The demand in the food and beverage sector in growing as the South Korean government has approved the use of chitosan as a natural food additive. Manufacturers in this region are producing chitosan at a large scale due to its biocompatibility, non-toxicity, and easy availability.”
Competitive vendor landscape
With the presence of a few multinational and regional vendors, the global chitosan market is moderately concentrated. The parent market for chitosan is the global renewable chemicals market. Opportunities for new entrants are evolving due to the ease of availability of raw materials, along with emerging applications of chitosan in pharmaceutical and biomedical, cosmetic, water treatment, and food and beverage. Existing players are also likely to develop new and differentiated products to gain market share.
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