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Versatile Protection: Ceresana Analyzes the Global Market for Biocides


Biocides protect industrial and consumer goods but also water from damages caused by viruses, bacteria, algae, or other undesired organisms. Ceresana analyzed the global market for chemicals for disinfection, material protection, preservation, and pest control already for the second time. “They are added to the respective end products in only relatively small amounts”, explains  Oliver Kutsch, CEO of Ceresana. ”Nevertheless, revenues of about USD 6.6 billion were generated with biocides worldwide in 2016.” The current market report expects another growth of revenues of about 2.1% per year.

Biocides Are Popular in the USA

With share of about 41% of global consumption, North America is the major sales market for biocides. This region also accounted for the highest revenues in 2016. Asia-Pacific and Western Europe followed, ranking second and third. All regions utilized by far the highest amount of biocides in the segment water treatment. Application in the segment wood preservation followed in Eastern Europe and the Americas. In Western Europe however, the segment disinfectants ranked second; in the region Asia-Pacific, the second highest amount of biocides was used in the paper industry. By contrast, biocide demand in the application area plastics ranked second in the Middle East and Africa.

Asia Expands Its Market Shares

Ceresana expects countries in Asia-Pacific, with the exception of Japan and South Korea, to increase their shares of the global market for biocides. Until 2024, this region is likely to see its share of worldwide biocide consumption to expand to over 25%. This development will occur mainly at the expense of Western Europe and North America, where the sales markets are already saturated. Growth impulses generated in those regions are not as much caused by an increase in consumption volume within individual sectors, but by alternations between the different product types. In this regard, legal requirements as well as health concerns and trends in the environmental consciousness are of vital importance. The trade-off between pest control on the one hand and environmental and animal protection on the other hand often is difficult.

Revenues Depend on the Biocide Type

The worldwide highest revenues in 2016 were generated with biocides based on halogen compounds, followed by biocides based on metallic and organosulfur compounds. Revenues generated with biocides based on halogen compounds that are, for example, used for tap water treatment, amounted to over USD 2 billion in 2016. Several ingredients are often combined to generate synergy effects.

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