Lignin Market Report

Lignin Market Analysis By Product (Ligno-sulphonates, Kraft Lignin, Organosolv Lignin) By Application (Macromolecules, Aromatics), By Region (North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Central & South America, MEA), And Segment Forecasts, 2018 - 2025

  • Published Date: Apr, 2017
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2015
  • Report ID: 978-1-68038-422-2
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2014 - 2015
  • Number of Pages: 110

Industry Insights

The global lignin market size was estimated at USD 732.7 million in 2015. Rising demand for lignin for use in binders, adhesives, and concrete admixtures is expected to drive the market growth over the forecast period. In addition, growing demand for dust control systems driven by the growth in air pollution is likely to emerge as the major growth driver over the next nine years.

U.S. lignin market revenue, by product, 2014-2025 (USD million)

U.S. lignin market

Rising demand for lignin as an additive in concrete due to superior properties such as water reduction, is expected to drive the growth over the forecast period. In addition, the market is expected to register growth on account growing awareness regarding superior benefits of lignin in animal feed is likely to benefit growth.

The lignin market in the U.S. is dominated by ligno-sulphonates on account of rising demand for bio-based macro-molecules and aromatics with a number of applications in industries including automobile, construction, energy, pharmaceutical, and food & beverage. In addition, favrable regulatory norms implemented by the governing agencies such as FDA is expected to drive the growth.

The market is expected to benefit from the singificant investments in R&D by the major manufacturers for the development of improved technologies for lignin extraction, and development of lignin applications in aromatics. The growth of construction industries, primarily across the developping economies in Asia Pacific is expected to drive growth.

The raw materials used for the production of lignin include products derived from wood. The production of timber has witnessed a steady increase over the past few decades leading to an abundance in raw materials. However, stringent regulations pertaining to deforestation across the globe is expected to limt the growth over the forecast period.

The development of advanced technologies including lignoforce and lignin-based polymer technology is expected to result in the an increased demand for lignin, benefitting the global market. In addition, improvement in the production technology for lignin is expected to drive the growth over the next nine years.

The lignin industry growth is challenged by the regulations and laws such as Lacey Act 2008, which ban or restrict the import and sale of wood and wood products. In addition, the market growth is also expected to be hampered by rising awareness regarding the negative impact of lignin production and use on the environment and human health.

The industry witnesses the presence of external substitutes such as petrochemicals in the production of aromatics and petrochemicals. However, high volatility in the price of crude oil is expected to negate the effect of the aforementioned restraint over the next nine years.

Product Insights

Ligno-sulphonates emerged as the largest product segment, accounting for over 88% of global share in 2015. The increase in the use of sulphur free lignin coupled with the rising awareness and demand for bio-based products in developed economies in North America and Europe is expected to propel the demand for the product over the forecast period.

Kraft lignin finds application as an intermediate in the production of numerous compounds including cement additives, biofuels, BTX, activated carbon, phenolic resins, carbon fibers and vanillin. Reduction in the reliance on crude oil has resulted in an increased use of bio-based raw materials, primarily by the chemicals manufactures engaged in manufacturing BTX, phenolic resins and carbon fibers.

Increasing demand for dispersant owing to large number of automotive and concrete industries primarily in North America is expected to boost the product demand over the forecast period. In addition, rapid development of construction and oil & gas industries across the globe is expected to fuel the growth. Furthermore, increasing application of the product as dust suppressor is expected open new avenues for the product market over the next few years.

Increasing demand for manufacturing various products including activated carbon, carbon fiber, phenol derivatives, vanillin and phenolic resins is expected to boost organosolv lignin demand over the next nine years. However, lack of economically favorable industrial processes for the production of organosolv lignin is expected to hamper growth.

Application Insights

Lignin finds high use in manufacturing macromolecules, which accounted for over 69% of global market volume in 2015. In addition, favorable application growth of carbon fibers in construction and automotive industries owing to their light weight is expected to drive the growth over the forecast period. However, presence of stringent regulations aimed at restricting the production of polymers for reducing greenhouse gas emissions is expected to limit industry growth.

Global lignin market share, by application, 2015 (%)

Global lignin market

Activated carbon is estimated to emerge as a major application for lignin which is likely to witness growth on account of increasing importance of waste water treatment in manufacturing sector to control water pollution. In addition, stringent regulations for the use of eco-friendly products in waste water treatment is expected to fuel demand for the product as an intermediate for the production of activated carbon.

Robust manufacturing base of chemical industry in the developing economies In Central & South America & Asia Pacific is expected to drive the chemical manufacturers towards an increase in the expenditure on the development of raw material such as lignin for aromatics production.

Regional Insights

Europe dominated the overall market in 2015, having accounted for nearly 40% of the overall revenues in 2015. The industry in Europe is expected to witness growth as intermediate for numerous chemical compounds such as BTX and phenolic resins. In addition, REACH regulations aimed at restricting transportation of synthetically derived chemicals is expected to have a positive impact on lignin market over the coming years. Furthermore, the growing demand for dust controllers to reduce air pollution while undertaking construction & building activities are expected to have a positive impact on the product demand in the region.

Germany accounted for the highest individual market share in the European market, with a share of over 15% in 2015. Robust manufacturing base of chemical manufacturers such as BASF, Henkel and Bayer in Germany, combined with their inclination towards sustainable development is expected to have positive impacts on the product demand over the forecast years.

The industry in Asia Pacific is expected to witness highest growth over the forecast period, with the increasing trend towards development of products through bio-based sources driving product demand during the forecast period. In addition, presence of a robust pulp and paper manufacturing industry in the region is anticipated to augment lignin production.

Competitive Insights

The industry is highly competitive on account of a vast number of participants in the industry, along with high potential for market entry in the coming years. Key industry players include Borregaard Lignotech, Tembec, Domtar Corporation, and Green Value SA.

Acquisition is expected to be the major strategy adopted by most players to remain competitive in the industry, with this strategy also being undertaken to diversify product portfolios and gain larger competitive shares, globally.

Report Scope



Base year for estimation


Actual estimates/Historical data

2014 - 2015

Forecast period

2016 - 2025

Market representation

Volume in Kilo Tons; Revenue in USD Million; and CAGR from 2016 to 2025

Regional scope

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

Country scope

U.S., Germany, U.K, China, India, Japan, Brazil

Report coverage

Volume & revenue forecast, company share, competitive landscape, growth factors and trends

15% free customization scope (equivalent to 5 analyst working days)

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Segments covered in the report

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional & country levels and provides an analysis on the industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2014 to 2025. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global lignin market on the basis of product, application, and region:

  • Product Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons; Revenue, USD Million; 2014 - 2025)

    • Ligno-sulphonates

    • Kraft lignin

    • Organosolv lignin

    • Others

  • Application Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons; Revenue, USD Million; 2014 - 2025)

    • Macromolecules

    • Aromatics

  • Regional Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons; Revenue, USD Million; 2014 - 2025)

    • North America

      • U.S.

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • France

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • India

      • Indonesia

    • Central & South America

      • Brazil

    • Middle East & Africa

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