GVR Report cover Agricultural Surfactants Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Agricultural Surfactants Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Type (Anionic, Cationic), By Application (Herbicides, Insecticides), By Substrate (Synthetic, Bio-based) By Crop Type, And Segment Forecasts, 2022 - 2030

  • Report ID: GVR-4-68040-013-1
  • Number of Pages: 150
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)

Report Overview

The global agricultural surfactants market size was estimated at USD 1.3 billion in 2021 and is expected to exhibit a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.3% from 2022 to 2030. The market is predominantly driven by the increasing demand for crop protection products in the agricultural field across the globe. In addition, increasing adoption of precision farming methods, shrinking arable land, and growing food demand globally due to the increasing world population are other factors driving the industry. The COVID-19 pandemic had a negative impact on industry growth. The pandemic led to the sealing of national borders, and the temporary shutting down of industries and markets in 2020.

 U.S. agricultural surfactants market size, by type, 2020 - 2030 (USD Million)

Supply chain disruptions and restrictions related to transportation resulted in an immediate price spike of various agricultural additives. The industry witnessed a recovery in 2021. However, at the beginning of 2022, there were fluctuations in crude oil supply and prices due to the Russia-Ukraine war. Nevertheless, the market is expected to witness significant growth over the forecast period. The ongoing R&D and technological developments promote the use of eco-friendly agricultural surfactants, and the widespread need for agricultural surfactants across the agricultural sector is expected to drive the industry in the near future.

Moreover, the increasing population across the globe is boosting the demand for agricultural products and crop production. This, in turn, boosts the need for increased pesticide usage, further propelling the demand for agricultural surfactants. The agricultural surfactants are derived from plant-based oils and petroleum raw materials. Furthermore, rising awareness regarding sustainability has nudged manufacturers to adopt agricultural surfactants and focus on R&D activities to improve bio-based surfactants.

One of the primary factors driving the expansion of bio-based surfactants is the growing consumer focus on health and wellness. In the U.S., consumers are gradually shifting toward organically produced goods. As a result, industries are focusing on producing bio-based, eco-friendly adjuvants, such as modified vegetable oils, methylated seed oil, and organo-modified siloxanes. For instance, Clariant AG offers Synergen OS, a bio-based green agricultural adjuvant. This environmentally friendly agricultural adjuvant is made from methylated seed oil.

Type Insights

Based on type, the industry has been further segmented into non-ionic, anionic, cationic, and amphoteric. The anionic segment accounted for the largest share of 28.5% in 2021, in terms of revenue, and is expected to continue to dominate the industry over the forecast period. This can be attributed to the increasing demand and use of agricultural surfactants in agriculture. It is a less expensive option compared to other types and contains dispersants, sulfonates, carboxylates, and sulfate.

Anionic surfactant helps in increasing the efficiency of pesticides. The non-ionic segment is expected to grow at the fastest CAGR over the forecast period as they are not harmful to plants, are stable & effective in breaking water surface tension, and have no charge. These surfactants are present in concentrations ranging between 80% and 90%, with a nearly identical pattern of activity. 80% of the surfactants that boost the activity of certain insecticides, post-emergent herbicides, defoliants, and others are non-ionic.

Substrate Insights

Based on substrate, the global industry has been further categorized into synthetic and bio-based. The synthetic segment accounted for the largest share of 64.5% in 2021 and is expected to retain its position over the forecast period. This can be attributed to their properties, such as good dispersion, stability in water, and less hazardous for plants. The synthetic substrate is widely used as it improves the effectiveness of the active spray components by providing even distribution and excellent wetting properties.

This propels the demand for agricultural surfactants. The bio-based segment, on the other hand, is expected to grow at the fastest growth rate during the forecast period. They are derived from bacteria, yeasts, and fungi. This growth is due to the rise in awareness of eco-friendly pesticides and the demand for less toxic crop protection. This segment has a promising role in the agriculture economy.

Crop Type Insights

Based on crop types, the global industry has been further categorized into cereals & grains, oilseeds & pulses, fruits & vegetables, and others. The cereals & grains segment accounted for the largest revenue share of 40.6% in 2021 and is expected to retain its position in the market over the forecast period. This can be attributed to a rise in the consumption of wheat, rice, rye, sorghum, corn, oats, and barley in various parts of Asia and North America.

The fruits & vegetables crop type segment is expected to grow at the fastest growth rate during the forecast period. This can be attributed to the growing demand for fresh fruits and vegetables across the globe owing to the increasing health consciousness among consumers. In addition, fruit and vegetable crop production is increasing at a higher rate, which is expected to drive the consumption of agricultural surfactants in pesticides.

Application Insights

The herbicides segment accounted for the largest share of 49.5% in 2021 and is expected to retain its dominant position throughout the forecast period. This can be attributed to the large consumption of herbicides, such as glyphosate, glufosinate, and others, in crop protection across the world. India, China, Brazil, and Argentina are among the largest pesticide-consuming countries due to their large agricultural sectors. The large-scale agricultural production is expected to drive the demand for herbicides in these countries.

 Global agricultural surfactants market share, by application, 2021 (%)

The insecticides segment is expected to grow at the fastest CAGR over the forecast period. This growth is due to the rise in demand for insecticides in diverse crop applications, such as cereals, pulses, grains, fruits, and vegetables. They have been proven to be beneficial in preventing early germination pest infestations in a diverse range of crops. For instance, in August 2022, Corteva, a U.S.-based agriscience company announced the completion of the expansion of its crop protection site in Michigan, U.S. The USD 242 million expansion will provide the firm to expand its manufacturing of naturally derived pinosyns insecticide and its global distribution.

Regional Insights

Asia Pacific accounted for the largest revenue share of 35.1% in 2021 due to the high demand for improved varieties of crops, increasing population, and the presence of countries with vast arable lands.  Countries, such as India, China, and Japan, are the major contributors to the growth of the regional market. Due to rapid urbanization and industrialization in the region, the total arable land is shrinking. Thus, agriculturists opt for agrochemicals that help in increasing productivity and yield further propelling the demand for agricultural surfactants.

Agricultural Surfactants Market Trends by Region

Europe accounted for the second-largest revenue share in 2021 and is anticipated to grow at a significant CAGR over the forecast period. The region is said to maintain its position in the industry in the coming years. However, crop production in various European countries has been discovered to be dropping in recent years. Ukraine was a major contributor to the region’s growth in 2020 as it is the largest consumer of pesticides in Europe. In terms of production, the European agricultural market is highly volatile. France, Italy, and Spain are other key contributors to the regional market growth.

Key Companies & Market Share Insights

The market is highly competitive. Companies are using partnerships, collaborations, acquisitions, mergers, and agreements to withstand the intense competition and increase their industry share. Manufacturers are spending extensively on research and development activities to develop advanced products and integrate new technologies and characteristics to lead a sustainable future.

For instance, in March 2021, BASF SE, a German-based chemical company, signed two separate collaboration agreements to strengthen its global leadership position in the bio-based surfactants industry. The strategic partnership with Allied Carbon Solutions Co. Ltd. includes ownership participation, making BASF the sole shareholder. Through such initiatives, the industry players are looking forward to incorporating sustainability, providing improved agricultural surfactant applications, and expanding their industry share. Some of the prominent players in the global agricultural surfactants market are:

  • Clariant

  • Evonik Industries


  • Dow DuPont

  • Solvay

  • Bayer AG

  • Nufarm

  • Huntsman International LLC

  • Croda International Plc

  • Helena Agri-Enterprises, LLC

  • Stepan Company

  • Wilbur-Ellis Holdings, Inc.

Agricultural Surfactants Market Report Scope

Report Attribute


Market size value in 2022

USD 1,350.9 million

Revenue forecast in 2030

USD 2.0 billion

Growth rate

CAGR of 5.3% from 2022 to 2030

Base year for estimation


Historical data

2017 - 2020

Forecast period

2022 - 2030

Quantitative units

Revenue in USD million/billion, volume in kilo tons, and CAGR from 2022 to 2030

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, volume forecast, company ranking, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends

Segments covered

Type, application, substrate, crop type, region

Regional scope

North America; Europe; Asia Pacific; Central & South America; Middle East & Africa

Country scope

U.S.; Canada; Mexico; Germany; Italy; France; Spain; Ukraine; China; India; Japan; Australia; ASEAN; Brazil; Argentina; Saudi Arabia; South Africa

Key companies profiled

Clariant; Evonik Industries; BASF SE; Dow DuPont; Solvay; Bayer AG; Nufarm; Huntsman International LLC; Croda International Plc; Helena Agri-Enterprises, LLC; Stepan Company; Wilbur-Ellis Holdings, Inc.

Customization scope

Free report customization (equivalent up to 8 analysts working days) with purchase. Addition or alteration to country, regional, and segment scope.

Pricing and purchase options

Avail customized purchase options to meet your exact research needs. Explore purchase options


Global Agricultural Surfactants Market Segmentation

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2017 to 2030. For this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global agricultural surfactants market report based on type, application, substrate, crop type, and region:

  • Type Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons, Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2030)

    • Non-ionic

    • Anionic

    • Cationic

    • Amphoteric

  • Application Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons, Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2030)

    • Herbicides

    • Insecticides

    • Fungicides

    • Others

  • Substrate Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons, Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2030)

    • Synthetic

    • Bio-based

  • Crop Type Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons, Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2030)

    • Cereals & Grains

    • Oilseeds & Pulses

    • Fruits & Vegetables

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons, Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2030)

    • North America

      • U.S.

      • Canada

      • Mexico

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • France

      • Italy

      • Spain

      • Ukraine

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • India

      • Japan

      • Australia

      • ASEAN

    • Central & South America  

      • Brazil

      • Argentina

    • Middle East & Africa

      • Saudi Arabia

      • South Africa


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