The global super absorbent polymers market size was valued at USD 7.85 billion in 2016 and is expected to register an estimated CAGR of 5.8% from 2015 to 2022. Increasing geriatric population, coupled with growing health awareness, is expected to drive the global and regional markets. Increased scope of application across various industries such as oil and gas, water treatment, agriculture, wires and cables, construction, packaging, and medical is expected to fuel market growth.
Rapid industrialization in various developing regions is also anticipated to contribute toward the market expansion over the forecast period. Europe led the global industry in the recent past. Asia Pacific is likely to expand at the highest CAGR over the forecast years owing to high product demand. Rising population along with high disposable income and increased awareness regarding personal hygiene in the emerging regions is predicted to augment market growth.
Government initiatives in the Asia Pacific region encouraging better agricultural practices using super absorbent polymers (SAP)s are presumed to complement the regional growth. In 2014, the U.S. market was valued at USD 1.52 billion in terms of revenue. High disposable income levels in developing countries have led to an increased demand for hygiene and personal care products including adult incontinence and female hygiene products and baby diapers. This, in turn, is likely to fuel the global market demand.
The super absorbent polymer value chain is relatively simple and includes raw material producers, super absorbent polymer producers, suppliers, and end-use industries. Each of these links in the value chain plays a critical role in the functioning of the entire industry. The primary raw material used for the production of super absorbent polymer is acrylic acid. The superabsorbent polymers market is characterized by a reasonably strong integration between the raw material producers, super absorbent polymer producers, and distributors.
Such complete integration also results in better economics, as well as better efficiency, along the value chain. Industry participants that demonstrate backward integration include BASF SE, Formosa Chemicals Corporation, LG Chemical Ltd., and Nippon Shokubai Co. Ltd. Complete integration across the value chain encompasses only the raw material producers and super absorbent polymer manufacturers and suppliers. There is very low integration between the end-use industries and the product manufacturers.
Baby diapers led the market by application in the recent past and accounted for 73.9% of the overall market in 2014. Demand from the agriculture application segment was 70.12 kilo tons in 2014. Increased scope of application in this segment due to the superior water retention characteristics of super absorbent polymers is expected to boost the market.
Government initiatives to promote agricultural applications, particularly in the water-scarce regions, are anticipated to play a key role in the market development. Other applications, such as adult incontinence products, are said to witness a strong growth in the coming years owing to rising geriatric population base in developed regions. Increased awareness regarding personal hygiene is also expected to result in higher product demand during the forecast period.
Europe was the dominant regional market in 2014 and accounted for a 30.80% share due to higher geriatric population and disposable income levels. North America is projected to witness steady development over the next few years. Asia Pacific region is also estimated to expand at a decent growth rate due to growing population along with increasing disposable income and awareness regarding health and hygiene.
India and China, in particular, are expected to have maximum growth in the Asia Pacific regional market. Other markets such as Middle East and Africa and Central and South America are anticipated to respectively account for 10.70% and 12.30% of the global market by 2022.
Acrylic acid is the major raw material for super absorbent polymers and accounts for nearly 80% of the product. Major acrylic acid applications other than super absorbent polymers include textiles, sealants, personal care products, mineral processing, and specialty acrylates. More than three-fourth of the global baby diaper market growth is expected to come from the developing regions. Such an estimated trend has prompted top industry participants to concentrate their strategic efforts in these potential areas.
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 2012 to 2022. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global super absorbent polymers market report on the basis of application and region:
Application Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2012 - 2022)
Adult Incontinence Products
Female Hygiene Products
Regional Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2012 - 2022)
Central & South America
Middle East and Africa
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