GVR Report cover Oleochemicals Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Oleochemicals Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Product (Glycerol Esters, Fatty Acid Methyl Ester), By Application (Industrial, Personal Care & Cosmetics, Paints & Inks), By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2021 - 2028

  • Report ID: 978-1-68038-282-2
  • Number of Pages: 130
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)

Report Overview

The global oleochemicals market size was valued at USD 19.46 billion in 2020 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.57% from 2021 to 2028. Rising consumption of renewable, sustainable, and bio-based chemicals in personal care & cosmetics, food & beverages, pharmaceuticals, and other industries is anticipated to drive the product demand over the forecast period. Moreover, the high costs of petrochemical products and shifting preference for eco-friendly products will boost the product demand further. The consumption of oleochemicals in the form of fatty acids, used for the production of soaps and detergents, surfactants, lubricants, varnishes, and pharmaceuticals, is also expected to propel the market growth over the coming years.

U.S. oleochemicals market size, by product, 2018 - 2028 (USD Billion)

Some of the basic 0leochemicals products include specialty esters, glycerol esters, alkoxylates, and others among which specialty esters represent one of the largest product segments. Fatty acids based on animal fats, plant oils, and vegetable oils are used in numerous applications in the industrial, personal care & cosmetic products, and food & beverages sectors.

The consumption of specialty esters in the end-use industries, such as personal care products and cosmetics, is rising, which is expected to propel the market growth over the forecast period. The increasing demand for sustainable and biodegradable products for reducing petrochemical dependence is estimated to remain a primary factor driving the market growth.

Manufacturers are taking initiatives aimed at replacing chemically-derived products with bio-based chemicals to minimize the reformulation and re-equipping time and cost. The rising demand for bio-based plastics is also expected to have a positive influence on market growth.

Product Insights

Specialty esters accounted for the largest volume share of over 33% in 2020 owing to the wide usage of these products in the production of rubber and cosmetics and as a lubricant in pharmaceutical applications. The maximum demand for fatty alcohols in the production of detergents and surfactants and thus inherits several growth prospects.

Fatty alcohols are being used in pharmaceuticals and cosmetics owing to their specific properties, such as emollients. The most commonly used product, Cetyl (C16) alcohol, is important in shaving creams, lipsticks, and hair lotions. Cetyl and stearyl (C18) alcohol bring similar properties, which are mainly used in dermatologic bases, bath preparations (bath oils, lotions, salts), antihistamine creams, and others. Moreover, fatty alcohols provide the starting point for the chemicals used as emulsion stabilizers, defoamers, metalworking lubricants, inks, perfumes, corrosion inhibitors, fire retardants, and others.

The consumption of synthetic products, such as Diethylene Glycol (DEG) and propylene glycol, is expected to decrease, which is further expected to promote biodiesel production and boost the demand for glycerol. Owing to the increasing use of crude glycerin in biodiesel production, companies are investing to find various alternative methods for the purification of crude glycerin. The market value of glycerin is dependent upon its purity, which makes it more appealing to potential buyers. Increasing demand from the various end-use sectors and derivative (downstream) manufacturing is projected to boost the demand for refined glycerin over the forecast period.

Application Insights

The industrial application segment accounted for the largest revenue share of 21.8% in 2020. However, the personal care & cosmetics segment is estimated to account for the highest revenue share by 2028 growing at the fastest CAGR over the forecast years. This growth can be credited to the shift in the consumer demand for eco-friendly and natural products. To cater to the rising demand for cosmetics and to meet the regulatory frameworks, personal care manufacturers have come up with upgraded and innovative technologies.

Growing the end-user industries, such as pharmaceuticals and personal care, in the U.S. is also anticipated to enhance the overall product demand. Glycerol derivatives are estimated to have high demand on account of numerous applications across various end-use industries including food & beverages and pharmaceuticals. The rapidly expanding cleaning products industry is expected to enhance the product demand as it includes surfactants and wetting agents, which can be produced from oleochemical sources. Companies, such as Procter and Gamble, a manufacturer of cleaning products in Europe, majorly use imported oleochemicals from Malaysia and Indonesia.

Global oleochemicals market share, by application, 2020 (%)

The growing market for organic personal care products makes use of bio-based raw materials or oleochemicals. Growing demand for natural and organic haircare, skincare, and other cosmetic products is anticipated to fuel the segment growth in the near future. Approval from human health & safety regulatory bodies, such as the USDA and FDA, for the utilization of organic products in several personal care products, has also led to industry growth. Plastic is another major application segment. Stearic acid (C16-C18) with a low concentration of unsaturated fatty acids is mainly used in the production of plastics.

Regional Insights

Asia Pacific accounted for the largest revenue share of over 40% in 2020 due to the increased demand for sustainable plastics in various end-user industries, which, in turn, has driven the demand for raw materials, such as fatty acids and other bio-based polymers.

Indonesia and Malaysia are the major producers of base products for oleochemicals. Asia Pacific along with being the largest consumer is also the largest producer of oleochemicals and accounts for over half of the global production. This large share is attributed to the rapid expansion of the end-use industries and the easy availability of feedstock.

Manufacturers’ preference for natural chemicals for the production of oleochemicals is expected to bolster the product demand over the forecast period. North America is projected to register significant growth from 2021 to 2028. Expansion of various end-user industries, such as pharmaceuticals and personal care & cosmetics, in the U.S. is anticipated to support the growth of the regional market.

Key Companies & Market Share Insights

The market is consolidated with a few major players occupying a higher market share. Companies have been extensively involved in R&D and are working towards the production of bio-based lubricants using oleochemicals, such as soybean oil as raw material. For instance, Cargill has developed electrical insulation fluid through soybean oil.

Companies are also focusing on acquisitions and mergers to strengthen their product portfolio, manufacturing capacities, and serve the customers globally. For instance, in November 2019, Emery Oleochemicals expanded its distribution partnership with Omya Inc. the company is leveraging the capabilities of Omya to provide technical support to Emery’s U.S. customers for Green Polymer Additives (GPA) products, such as release agents, antifogging, lubricants, and specialty plasticizers. Some of the prominent players in the global oleochemicals market include:

  • Cargill, Inc.


  • Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad


  • Oleon N.V.

  • IOI Group Berhad

  • Wilmar International

  • Kao Corp.

Oleochemicals Market Report Scope

Report Attribute


Market size value in 2021

USD 20.98 billion

Revenue forecast in 2028

USD 34.89 billion

Growth rate

CAGR of 7.57% from 2021 to 2028

Base year for estimation


Historical data

2017 - 2019

Forecast period

2021 - 2028

Quantitative units

Volume in kilotons, revenue in USD million/billion, and CAGR from 2021 to 2028

Report coverage

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

Segments covered

Product, application, region

Regional scope

North America; Europe; Asia Pacific; Central & South America; MEA

Country scope

U.S.; Canada; Mexico; Germany; France; U.K.; Italy; Spain; The Netherlands; Russia; Switzerland; Poland; Sweden; China; India; Japan; South Korea; Malaysia; Singapore; Indonesia; Taiwan; Australia; Brazil; Argentina; South Africa; Saudi Arabia

Key companies profiled

Cargill, Inc.; SABIC; Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad; BASF SE; Oleon N.V.; IOI Group Berhad; Wilmar International; Kao Corp.

Customization scope

Free report customization (equivalent up to 8 analyst’s working days) with purchase. Addition or alteration to country, regional & segment scope.

Pricing and purchase options

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

Segments Covered in the Report

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 2028. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global oleochemicals market report on the basis of product, application, and region:

  • Product Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2028)

    • Specialty Esters

    • Fatty Acid Methyl Ester

    • Glycerol Esters

    • Alkoxylates

    • Fatty Amines

    • Others

  • Application Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2028)

    • Personal Care & Cosmetics

    • Consumer Goods

    • Food & Beverages

    • Textiles

    • Paints & Inks

    • Industrial

    • Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals

    • Polymer & Plastic Additives

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2017 - 2028)

    • North America

      • U.S.

      • Canada

      • Mexico

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • U.K.

      • France

      • Italy

      • Spain

      • The Netherlands

      • Russia

      • Switzerland

      • Poland

      • Sweden

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • India

      • Japan

      • South Korea

      • Malaysia

      • Singapore

      • Indonesia

      • Taiwan

      • Australia

    • Central & South America

      • Brazil

      • Argentina

    • Middle East & Africa

      • South Africa

      • Saudi Arabia

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