The Europe squalene market size was valued at USD 36.22 million in 2020 and is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10.6% from 2021 to 2030. Increasing demand for squalene in the pharmaceutical applications as an adjuvant for immune enhancement is one of the major factors driving the consumption. Furthermore, increasing applications of squalene in nutraceuticals and food supplements owing to its ability to serve as an anti-cancer and antioxidant agent are projected to propel the demand for the product.
Squalene can be produced from both natural and chemical sources, such as animal oils, plant oils, and synthesized chemical feedstock. Synthetic squalene is produced from genetically engineered yeast cells. However, squalene obtained from the liver of deep-sea sharks is considered to produce the highest yields of good-quality squalene. The industry pivoted towards its extraction through plant oils that include amaranth, olive, rice bran, and others. The European Union is the leading producer, consumer, and exporter of olive oil, accounting for approximately 65% of the world’s export.
The demand for squalene in the pharmaceutical industry went up during the lockdown owing to its usage in the COVID-19 vaccines. There are only a handful of companies that are manufacturing vaccines derived from squalene and most of them have collaborated with GlaxoSmithKline to do so.
However, at the beginning of the pandemic, from March 2020 to July 2020, due to the shortage of supplies and disruptions in the supply chain, the market registered a decline in growth. With an increase in the research & development activities related to the development of covid-19 vaccines, the demand for the product has replenished.
The overfishing of sharks is endangering certain shark species, thereby increasing concerns regarding their extinction. This has resulted in increased focus of market participants on plant-based and synthetically derived squalene. Furthermore, according to, The Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) 2018 study, for Squalene; the Max Conc. of Use (%) (maximum concentration of use) has decreased since 2001. Squalene was used at max conc. up to 10%; however, in 2018, the report states that the maximum concentration of use is 1.2%.
The main destinations of the European Union’s olive oil are Brazil, the U.S., and Japan. Spain is the world’s largest producer of olive oil contributing to more than 40% of the world’s olive oil production, especially from Andalusia. Other 20% is produced in Italy, followed by 18% from Tunisia and 12% from Greece. The European oil market is anticipated to witness considerable growth over the projected period being the largest producer of olive oil in the world.
Plant sources accounted for the largest revenue share of over 80.0% in 2020 and are anticipated to maintain their lead in the future. Changing regulatory scenarios across the region is driving the plant-based squalene segment. Regulations promoting the use of plant-based squalene over animal-based squalene, coupled with R&D efforts related to them, are expected to shift the manufacturing trend toward plant-based squalene in the near future.
In terms of volume, synthetic squalene is projected to expand at a CAGR of 7.8% over the forecast period. Other than plant-derived squalene, its synthetically derived counterparts from genetically engineered yeast cells have gained traction owing to their efficacy as vaccine adjuvants. New developments in synthetic biology have far-reaching effects on the demand for biologically derived natural products.
Major cosmetic manufacturers like L’Oreal and Unilever source plant-based or synthetic-based squalene for producing various cosmetic products. Biotechnological advancements have developed synthetic techniques to produce squalene, however, the yields are not sufficient to fulfill the demand on a global scale.
The personal care and cosmetics segment accounted for the largest revenue share of over 70.0% in 2020. The growing demand for high-quality cosmetic products and the beneficial properties of squalene are driving the market demand for various formulations.
In the personal care and cosmetics industry, squalene has become a vital ingredient in skincare owing to its several properties, such as translucid, the absence of toxicity, moisturizing properties, low odor, and sensorial properties, making it one of the preferred emollients. In cosmetics, squalene finds application in skincare, sun care, hair care, and others.
The pharmaceuticals segment is poised to expand at the fastest revenue-based CAGR of 10.8% during the forecast period on account of the increasing use of squalene in over-the-counter medications and numerous health supplements. The high prevalence of cardiovascular diseases and cancer are anticipated to fuel the demand for squalene in the pharmaceutical industry. Moreover, squalene is used in a number of vaccines, capsules, and ointments to improve their efficacy.
Nutraceuticals are foods, natural extracts, or ingredients that play a vital role in promoting health. Toxicological studies show that squalene when consumed orally has better tolerance and faster absorbance compared to cholesterol. Based on the nutraceutical properties of some plant extracts such as phenolic content and antioxidant potential, squalene has helped in combating some major health issues related to cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and others.
Other end uses of squalene include its use in repellents, high-grade machine oils, bactericides, rubber, surface-active agents, artificial and natural silk, aromatics, chemicals, and organic color matter. Traditionally shark liver oil was used as a lubricant owing to its melting point of -75°C and boiling point of 330°C, in streetlamps, for coating the hulls of wooden boats, and as a preservative for preventing marine fouling.
Germany accounted for the largest volume share of more than 18.0% in 2020. This is attributed to the growing demand for squalene in leather, textiles, cosmetics, paints, and varnishes. Germany is one of Europe’s largest markets for beauty products and is rapidly growing on account of strong domestic consumerism for personal care products, which, in turn, is expected to complement the demand for squalene in the country.
Germany is considered a prospective European market for exports of natural ingredients. The country has the largest consumer market as well as the major production centers for cosmetics. Germany, also being the largest manufacturer of natural cosmetics, is expected to cater to the high demand for cosmetics in the European region. Moreover, major cosmetic manufacturers in this country shifted from animal-derived products to plant-based squalene to produce cosmetic products, notably L’Oréal.
In terms of volume, Portugal is projected to expand at the highest CAGR of 8.6% over the forecast period owing to the growing food and beverage industry in the country. Squalene is found naturally in various food items, including rice bran, date palm, fungi, and amaranth seeds. Several studies have proved that the daily intake of squalene may reduce the chances of getting certain cancers and also improve immunity. Moreover, the growing awareness regarding the benefits of squalene and the need to maintain a healthy lifestyle are likely to augment the demand for squalene in the country over the forecast period.
The market is highly competitive due to the general quantity of shipments fulfilled in high volumes and product variations offered by several local and multinational players. Mergers, acquisitions, and joint ventures are some of the commonly adopted strategies by market players to reduce the overall cost of the product and sustain in the highly competitive arena.
Many industry players establish partnerships with third-party distributors and raw material suppliers to safeguard continuous raw material supply. For instance, DKSH and Efpbiotek signed an exclusive agreement for the distribution of a range of natural ingredients for personal care applications to ten markets in Europe and Asia Pacific.
Manufacturers are aiming to achieve optimum business growth and a strong market position through the implementation of various strategies, such as integration by acquisition, joint ventures, production capacity expansion, new product development, promotion of key product brands, and significant investments in research & development. Key companies are also focusing on several R&D activities for the development of novel products for the niche market.
For instance, SOPHIM developed a new product, BIOPHYTOSEBUM, which offers extra efficacy on the skin. The major components in this product are squalene and liquid wax esters, which play a vital role in the recovery of the lipidic skin barrier. Some prominent players in the Europe squalene market include:
Henry Lamotte Oils GmbH
Kuraray Europe GmbH
Maruha Nichiro Corporation
Wilshire Technologies Inc.
Market size value in 2021
USD 40.08 million
Revenue forecast in 2030
USD 99.12 million
CAGR of 10.6% from 2021 to 2030 (Revenue-based)
Market demand in 2021
Volume forecast in 2030
CAGR of 8.0% from 2021 to 2030
Base year for estimation
2017 - 2019
2021 - 2030
Revenue in USD million, volume in tons, and CAGR from 2021 to 2030
Revenue forecast, volume forecast, company ranking, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends
Source, end use, country
U.K.; Germany; France; Italy; Spain; Russia; Portugal; Benelux
Key companies profiled
Efpbiotek; Gracefruit Limited; VESTAN; Henry Lamotte Oils GmbH; Sophim; Kuraray Europe GmbH; Maruha Nichiro Corporation; Wilshire Technologies Inc.
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This report forecasts revenue and volume growth at the regional and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends and opportunities in each of the sub-segments from 2017 to 2030. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the Europe squalene market report on the basis of source, end use, and country:
Source Outlook (Volume, Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2030)
End-use Outlook (Volume, Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2030)
Personal Care & Cosmetics
Food & Beverages
Country Outlook (Volume, Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2030)
b. The Europe squalene market was valued at USD 36.22 million in 2020 and is projected to reach USD 40.08 million by 2021.
b. The Europe squalene market is projected to witness a CAGR of 10.6% from 2021 to 2030 to reach USD 99.12 million by 2028.
b. Personal care & cosmetics application dominated the Europe squalene market with a share of 71.86% in 2020. In the personal care & cosmetics industry, squalene has become a vital ingredient in skin care owing to its several properties such as the translucid, absence of toxicity, moisturizing properties, low odor, and sensorial properties, making it one of the preferred emollients.
b. Key players in the Europe squalene market are efpbiotek, Gracefruit Limited, VESTAN, Henry Lamotte Oils GmbH, Sophim, Kuraray Europe GmbH, Maruha Nichiro Corporation, Wilshire Technologies Inc.
b. Rising demand from the cosmetics and pharmaceutical industry is likely to fuel the Europe squalene market growth.
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