GVR Report cover Biodegradable Superabsorbent Materials Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Biodegradable Superabsorbent Materials Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Product (Polyvinyl Alcohol, Polyitaconic acid), By Application, By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2017 - 2024

  • Published Date: Oct, 2016
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2015
  • Report ID: GVR-1-68038-262-4
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2013-2015
  • Number of Pages: 85

Industry Insights

The global biodegradable superabsorbent materials market size was estimated at USD 120.64 billion in 2016 and is expected to register a CAGR of 5.8% over the forecast period. Rising demand for disposable diapers, female hygiene products, and adult incontinence products is projected to drive the growth. High demand in agriculture application is expected to further fuel the growth.

Superabsorbent materials are one of the key products used for manufacturing baby diapers. These polymers are used for absorbing as well as retaining fluids, especially under moderately high pressure. Polyitaconic acid, polysaccharide, polyacrylamide, and polyvinyl alcohol are the major product segments, as they are characterized by excellent absorption rates and biocompatibility along with being easily decomposable.

U.S. biodegradable superabsorbent materials market

The U.S. is an important and mature market and has witnessed significant growth in the penetration of biodegradable superabsorbent materials over the past few years. The market players are emphasizing on comfort and are focusing on matching the performance and cost with the development of new configurations of sanitary pads and diapers.

Increasing demand for adult incontinence and female hygiene products are other factors expected to boost the demand for bio-based superabsorbent materials over the forecast period. Rise in geriatric population coupled with the substantial risk them acquiring urine incontinence disorders is one of the major factors, contributing significantly to the product demand.

Rising awareness regarding the ill-effects of toxic elements in petroleum-based polymers on human health is anticipated to have a positive impact on growth. In addition, the biodegradable nature has aided in augmenting the product penetration in the agriculture sector, which is anticipated to be one of the key segments over the forecast period.

Growing disposable income, awareness regarding hygiene, and market penetration measures taken by industry participants are expected to augment the product demand over the forecast period. Emerging regions such as China and India are estimated to witness the significant growth on account of the rapid expansion of end-user segments in near future.

Product Insights

Polyvinyl alcohol contributed to the largest revenue share of over 66.7% in 2016. It is anticipated to witness similar growth on account of excellent water retention abilities of the product, which aids in boosting its liquid absorption applications such as baby diapers and adult incontinence products.

Polyacrylamide is expected to witness a CAGR of 7% in terms of revenue, from 2017 to 2024, on account of increasing demand for the material in various feminine hygiene and adult incontinence applications. In addition, these products have high biodegradability and biocompatibility properties, which makes them a stable fit for certain applications as compared to other biodegradable polymers, thereby boosting the demand.

Penetration of polysaccharides in various applications is likely to witness growth on account of various attributes of the product such as biocompatibility, nontoxicity, biodegradability, and low production cost. Furthermore, the ability of the product to form hydrogels by physical or chemical crosslinking is anticipated to have a positive impact on product demand.

Polyitaconic acid, derived from the polymerization of itaconic acid, is water soluble and is used for amendment in soil retention and delivering essential nutrients to the soil. The product is used as a replacement for polyacrylic acid in various applications. Rising awareness regarding the product benefits, coupled with its increasing penetration in agriculture is likely to augment the market growth.

Application Insights

Disposable diapers were the largest application segment for biodegradable superabsorbent materials in 2016, accounting for 59.3% of the revenue share, on account of increasing population in developing countries such as India, China, Brazil, Vietnam, Indonesia, and other ASEAN countries. This factor has led to a considerable rise in demand for various infant care products including diapers, driving the market growth.

Adult incontinence and female hygiene are other major application segments of the market. Rising awareness regarding hygiene is anticipated to augment the demand over the forecast period. Adult incontinence and female hygiene products together are estimated to be worth over USD 60 million by 2024. 

Global biodegradable superabsorbent materials market

Enhanced design, better liquid absorption ability, and biocompatibility are some of the key features of biodegradable superabsorbent materials, on account of which various diaper manufacturing companies are strongly investing in developing economies to expand their regional and global presence.

Rise in the number of older population, especially in the developed economies of Europe and North America, is expected to be a critical factor for the growth of the adult diaper segment over the forecast period. Products such as light incontinence pads and adult diapers are increasingly becoming amenable to use, thereby complementing market growth.

Regional Insights

Europe was the largest market accounting for 32.8% of the global revenue in 2016. Stringent regulations regarding the use of synthetic polymers for manufacturing personal care and other medical hygiene products are anticipated to provide considerable scope for growth in the future. This scenario is likely to reflect, especially in Germany, the U.K., and France among other countries.

Asia Pacific is projected to witness a CAGR of 7.7% in terms of revenue, from 2017 to 2024 on account of the rapid developments in the personal care and hygiene sector. India and China have witnessed a tremendous increase in the infant populace over the past decade, which is expected to drive the product demand over the forecast period.

Rising awareness and social acceptance regarding a wide range of health issues in North America have resulted in changing the demand landscape of the hygiene industry. The penetration of biodegradable superabsorbent materials in the hygiene industry for adult continence products coupled with aging population in the region is likely to boost market growth over the forecast period.

Developing regions such as Asia Pacific and Latin America are estimated to witness a significant rise in demand by 2024 for baby diapers as a result of high birth rate and growing disposable income. This positive scenario is estimated to provide substantial leverage to the overall market growth in the near future.

Biodegradable Superabsorbent Materials Market Share Insights

Major market players include BASF SE; Itaconix Corporation; Exotech Bio Solutions Ltd.; Archer Daniels Midland Company; Amereq, Inc.; JRM Chemical Inc.; SNF Floerger; TryEco LLC; and Nuoer Chemical Australia Pty Ltd. Product innovation regarding the development of eco-friendly and hygienic polymers is expected to remain a crucial supporting factor for growth.

Over the past few years, companies including Exotech Bio Solutions Ltd., TryEco LLC, Itaconix Corporation, Nuoer Chemical Australia Pty Ltd., and Archer Daniels Midland Company have launched new bio-based superabsorbent materials, to meet the growing demand especially in Brazil, China, and India.

Report Scope



Base year for estimation


Actual estimates/Historical data

2012 - 2015

Forecast period

2017 - 2024

Market representation

Volume in kilo tons, revenue in USD million and CAGR from 2017 to 2024

Regional scope

North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, Middle East & Africa

Country scope

U.S., Germany, United Kingdom, France, China, India, Japan, Brazil,

Report coverage

Volume forecast, revenue forecast, competitive landscape, growth factors and trends

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