Biopolymer market size was valued at more than USD 2.2 billion in 2015 and is expected to be worth over USD 6.5 billion by 2023, growing at a CAGR of more than 14%. Growing environmental concerns pertaining to the use of synthetic-based packaging coupled with increasing consumer demand for longer shelf life and high quality food products are anticipated to drive biopolymer coatings market size during the forecast period.
Packaging was the dominant segment and accounted for approximately 55% of the total volume in 2015. Cost efficiency and environment friendliness are likely to be the key factors to drive growth. Cost, particularly will be critical, as industry penetration will be ultimately guided by biopolymer coatings market price trend.
U.S. biopolymer coatings market size is anticipated to witness high growth owing to the growing food & packaging industry and rising trend for green technology. Europe is expected to grow at significant rate due to growth in the food industry and shift in consumer preference for biodegradable products.
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Asia Pacific biopolymer coatings market share is expected to be a major contributor due to the rapid industrialization and government initiatives in countries such as China and India to promote biodegradable products.
Biopolymers are sustainable, nontoxic, and recyclable petrochemical packaging substitutes. Increasing conventional energy resource prices and growing demand from consumers are also expected to be the key drivers.
Biopolymer coating materials can be segmented into protein, polysaccharide and lipids. They can be used alone as well as together. Regular paper pigments, plasticizers, antioxidants and antimicrobial agents are added to coating solutions in order to enhance performance properties. Reutilization and recyclability are expected to be key factors to replace petroleum-based synthetic packaging from biopolymer coatings.
Protein-based coatings include caseinates, whey protein, soy protein, wheat gluten, and corn zein. Protein is suitable for vegetables & fruits, eggs, meat, dry foods, nuts, and paper packaging. Protein-derived coatings are good affective oxygen barrier at low to medium humidity. However, water vapor prevention is average due to its hydrophilic nature.
Whey protein is anticipated to substitute commercial paperboard material such as fluorocarbon and polyvinyl alcohol owing to its oxygen and grease prevention abilities while maintaining food texture and taste. Insolubility in water, gas barrier and film forming properties are likely to be among key factors to drive demand for wheat gluten-based biopolymer coatings market.
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Polysaccharide consists of chitosan, alginates, and starch. It is used in paper packaging, owing to properties such as protection from gas, grease, and moisture. Starch is the most widely used agriculture raw material owing to its mass availability and low cost and is likely to continue witnessing high demand. Providing smooth paper surface without affecting its barrier properties are among key reasons for adoption. Lipid and composite are used in coating matrix and films due to their hydro-repellency properties that prevent moisture and vapor in packaging.
Coatings help in retarding unnecessary moisture transfer as well as protecting food products from oxygen and oil. Global food packaging market size is estimated to be valued over 300 billion by 2023; increasing demand for bio-based packaging products is likely to fuel demand for biopolymer coatings. These factors are likely to give competitive edge to this product over synthetic and paperboard packaging materials.
Government support and initiatives to promote renewable energy resources and cost efficiency are likely to drive biopolymer coatings market size. These bio-packaging trends are anticipated to provide potential benefits to agricultural processors and farmers.
The global biopolymer coatings market share is dominated by Meredian Holdings Group (MHG), a private manufacturing company with a wide range of bio-based products. MHG received Food Substance Contact Notification approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This is likely to help in product portfolio expansion.
Other major companies consist of Cargill, Algae Biopolymers, Solanyl Biopolymers, FMC, and Nature Works LLC.
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