The global bioadhesives market surpassed 750 kilo tons in 2015. It is estimated to reach nearly 2.5 million tons by 2024 from 2 million tons in 2023. Greater preference for bio-based products will drive the market in the coming years. Bioadhesives are a type of glues. While glues are synthetically derived from biological monomers, like sugars or synthetic bonding agents; bioadhesives are natural polymeric materials. Unlike synthetic glues, bioadhesives possess the properties to build durable interfaces between hard and soft materials.
The product will witness substantial growth because of greater awareness about the ill effects of synthetic materials. Moreover, its bio-based property and low production cost could positively affect demand. Fluctuating crude oil prices may influence the prices of petrochemical-based adhesives. This in turn would hike the prices of synthetic adhesives and boost demand for the same in the years to come.
Furthermore, awareness about the durability of packaging from natural sources could favor industry growth. Depletion of conventional resources propels the demand for packaging materials derived from natural resources. Bioadhesives are used in packaging & paper industries, like cigarettes & filters, printed sheets lamination, flexible packaging, and specialty packaging. Demand for frozen foods may add to industry growth.
The use of bioadhesives in flexible packaging, healthcare, and in chemical industries can contribute significantly to the market during the forecast period. Strict governmental control over chemical industries is anticipated to augment the demand for bioadhesives. The primary rationale of such regulations is to bring down the consumption of fossil fuels by chemical industries. Stringent environmental regulations and initiatives for the promotion of eco-friendly & natural products will support industry performance.
Manufacturers are investing heavily in the R&D of advanced bioadhesives, owing to the growing importance of bio-products. Robust research & development in healthcare, coatings, and construction industries could drive the industry till 2024. Bioadhesives are used in healthcare for better drug delivery and for quicker wound healing. These enhance the efficacy of medicines. They, however have lower shelf-life as compared to their synthetic alternatives. This may hinder market growth in the coming years.
The bioadhesives market is divided into sources, applications, and geographies. On the basis of sources, the market is bifurcated into animal base and plant base. Carbohydrates (starch) and proteins (gelatin) are adopted as general adhesives. Plant based adhesives dominated the market (in terms of volume) in 2014. They occupied over 85% shares that year. Raw materials such as corn, soy, and starch are abundantly available and are highly affordable. Greater preference for natural adhesives could fuel the demand for these raw materials.
The animal based adhesives segment is projected to expand at over 13% till 2024. These glues are derived from bones, hides, and hooves and are used in wood working, piano repairs, antique restoration, and in pipe organ building. However, their short shelf-life may hinder growth of the bioadhesives industry.
Based on applications, the industry is segmented into construction, medical, packaging & paper, personal care, wood, and others. In terms of volume, packaging & paper held the largest shares (exceeding 37%) in 2014. Widespread application in F&B packaging can drive the market from 2016 to 2024. They are mainly used for better binding strength, performance, durability, and elasticity. Furthermore, bonding agents should ideally be recyclable, natural, renewable, and biodegradable. Besides, these need to be non-toxic & safe enough to be used for food packaging. They should also be free of ingredients that could hamper consumer health.
Construction was the second largest application segment in 2014. This application may exhibit considerable growth in the forthcoming years. This can be attributed to high investments in infrastructure & construction in emerging nations of the Middle East, Asia Pacific, and Latin America. The widespread application of bioadhesives in wall lamination and residential roofing in developed economies could create lucrative growth opportunities for the market.
The medical application segment contributed to less than 10% of the total market shares in 2014. However, it is projected to register the highest CAGR surpassing 13% during the forecast period. Bioadhesives in the field of medicine are used for dressing wounds, transdermal drug delivery, skin-bonded monitoring devices, and also as surgical adhesives. They possess biocompatible properties that make them ideal for applications that involve skin and body tissues. These adhesives are known to work effectively under water and in wet conditions.
Geographically, the global market is fragmented into Europe, North America, Central & South America (CSA), and the Middle East & Africa (MEA). Europe dominated the market in 2014. This trend can continue till 2024. Rigid regulations regarding bio-based ingredients imposed by the government may support industrial growth over the next eight years. Moreover, bioadhesives manufacturers get up to 50% cash grant from the government, which will fuel demand. The implementation of emission reduction norms in wood industries will also positively influence the market till 2024.
In 2014, North America was the second largest regional market in the industry. A key factor driving this region is the widening application scope in packaging & paper and construction industries. Greater awareness about environment friendly, bio-based, and bio-safe products, can add significantly to market expansion. The North American region may be propelled by the entry of new market entrants. This will stand to benefit the region over the forecast period.
Other factors stimulating the market are environmental initiatives by agencies, such as the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) and the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC). Asia Pacific is anticipated to exhibit moderate growth owing to increasing construction and remodeling activities in the region.
The global bioadhesives market is highly competitive, and the top manufacturers are Ecosynthetix Incorporated; SCION, and Cryolife Incorporated. Together they accounted for around 70% of the total market shares, over the past couple of years. Ecosynthetix dominates the global market with a huge margin. Other companies include the 3M Company, Dow Chemical Company, Ashland and Henkel. Players partake in extensive R&D activities pertaining to technological advancements, development of new techniques, and improvements in raw materials. This enables them to strive towards a greater market share.
Research Support Specialist, USA