An innate sub-vertical of the bulk and specialty chemicals industry, biocides market, has been witnessing a plethora of advanced and upgraded product revelations by some of the leading players in recent times. Undertaking strategies like collaborations, mergers, acquisitions, product differentiations, and facility expansions, is a highly observed trend in this industry. For instance, Lanxess Aktiengesellschaft, the Germany-based pioneer in specialty chemicals, had in late 2019, declared taking over the Brazil-headquartered biocide producer Itibanyl Produtos Especiais Ltda. (IPEL).
It has been speculated that the inclusion of IPEL’s business into the LANXESS profile would enable the company to expand its global production network while bolstering its position in the South American continent. The novel move comes on the heels of the company’s plans to tap the mounting biocides demand worldwide. Biocides market size incidentally, is expected to command an overall valuation in excess of $15.95 billion by 2026.
Generally, biocides are biological or chemical compounds that restrict the growth of living organisms when used in sufficient concentration and duration. These are typically present in vivid forms such as antiseptics, disinfectants, and preservatives and are commonly used in forestry, medicine, industry, agriculture, and anti-fouling agents and disinfectants. The global biocides market is perceived to be massively influenced by the rising demand for an uninterrupted supply of fresh and safe water by various emerging economies on the grounds of expanding population and rapid economic growth.
How are biocides leveraging unprecedented benefits in wastewater treatment?
It is noteworthy to mention that nearly 2 million tons of industrial, sewage, and agricultural waste are discharged into the water every day, which is equivalent to the weight of the entire human population. Moreover, a report by UNDESA 2014, depicted that close to 70 percent of the world’s population would be living in the cities by 2050, thus enunciating a dire need for wastewater treatment in an efficient and sustainable manner.
In this aspect, what stands as an ideal solution for wastewater management is the use of halogen biocides. One of its intrinsic properties is its ability to offer disinfection for a prolonged period of time, thereby maintaining superior water quality through the pipes leading the consumer outlets.
How these products help in water treatment is that they assist in destroying the microorganisms by shunning their growth, thus treating the wastewater being discharged from the industries. Undeniably, these merits have laid a positive impact on the overall market growth prospects for halogen biocides for water treatment applications.
Laying emphasis on the technological developments in the biocides market space from water treatment application, it is imperative to mention Lanxess’s addition of a new biocidal formulation to its existing expansive gamut of biocides portfolio. The specialty chemicals pioneer, in 2017, announced the development of a biocide active ingredient- Preventol DP 1021- which can abundantly be used for microbial control in industrial water systems by inhibiting biofilm formation. On top of that, the new formulation supports reducing the organic load buildup on the surface of water treatment systems, which also aids in lowering the formation of biofilms. In this regard, it is safe to declare to the burgeoning demand for wastewater treatment systems in residential and industrial sectors globally would propel the biocides market expansion in the years to come.
Pertaining to the broad application spectrum of these chemicals across wood preservation, F&B, HVAC, personal care, and paints and coatings, the demand for safe biocides has had a significant effect on the revenue graph of biocides industry.
Over the years, the aforementioned sectors have been massively demanding environmentally-viable solutions. This change of preference can be credited to the increasing need to comply with the enforced guidelines and standards prescribed by various central and state governments across vivid developed and developing nations subject to the increasing concern towards environmental safety.
Supporting the statement, the South Korea Ministry of Environment had in 2019 announced approval criteria for biocidal products and substances under the Consumer Chemical Products and Biocide Safety Management Law, wherein the substances that were manufactured or imported until Dec. 31, 2018, were to be reported to the Ministry by the end of June 2019 to receive a grace period of up until 2029 for approval. It was also reported that the companies, that under any conditions do not report their substances to the Ministry, would be banned from producing or importing such substances.
In line with these, the European Commission had also in 2018 announced presenting ‘key actions’ to accelerate the biocides review program progress for both the applicants and authorities.
Such initiatives present a glimpse of the impending scenario of biocides market in the overall bulk and specialty chemicals industry space.
The outbreak of novel coronavirus pandemic, which people perceived to be ‘normal’, has currently paralyzed various nations, disrupting the global economy. Mounting COVID-19 cases have raised the need for disinfectants worldwide that will continue to surge in the upcoming months across the economies of Europe and other continents, as industry experts anticipate the virus outbreaks to become more prevalent in the near future.
The manufacturers and importers of biocides are playing an eminent role in reducing the spread of coronavirus while combating the surging cases.
Myriad companies have been contributing to expediting the production and import of biocidal disinfectant products, while some of them also looking forward to supplying these disinfectants for free to hospitals and healthcare professionals. In this matter, the EU Commission and European Chemicals Agency in line with different countries in the EU have approved exceptional transitional measures to permit the chemical companies to place more disinfectant products in the market within a shorter timeline.
Amidst various speculations and rumors, numerous reports claim that the workers exposed to chemicals such as sanitizers, disinfectants, sterilizers, and deodorizers on the job, are more likely to develop thyroid cancer compared to other people. In fact, it is being speculated that occupational exposure to biocides could level up to 65 percent higher risk of thyroid cancer. However, the authenticity of the aforesaid is still debatable.
Despite various concerns being raised on ground levels pertaining to rising security and environmental issues, the biocides industry is set to chart out lucrative gains in the ensuing years owing to a robust application and end-user portfolio.