Global bioplastics market to reach $30 billion by 2020: report
Driven by consumer preference, the global market for bioplastics will grow at compounded annual growth rate of 14.8% to become a US$30 billion market by 2020, a new report says.
According to the report by Oregon-based market intelligence company Allied Market Research, the key factors propelling this growth are the rising environmental awareness among consumers and what it describes as the “substantial curiosity of packaging industries towards biodegradability,” which is responsible for the increasing adoption of bioplastics in rigid packaging applications. Rigid plastic packaging applications are forecast to account for more than 40% of the market revenue by 2020, the study notes, making them the fastest growing application segment, at a CAGR of 31.8%, during the forecast period.
The report also notes that Europe was the highest consumer – and Asia Pacific was the largest producer – of bioplastics in 2014. Asia Pacific is predicted to become the fastest growing consumer during the forecast period.
PLA is projected to be the fastest growing segment in the overall biodegradable plastics market, in terms of revenue and volume, the study also forecasts.
“North America and Europe collectively accounted for more than 60% of the market in 2014 and are expected to maintain their lead throughout the forecast period,” the study says. “European policy support for bioplastic manufacturers and increasing health awareness among consumers are the key factors responsible for the market growth within this region. However, Asia Pacific is projected to be the most lucrative market owing to availability of huge renewable feedstocks coupled with increasing investment made by the global bioplastics players.”
The consumption of ‘drop-in’ bioplastics (Bio-PE, Bio-PET 30, Bio-PA) and others, the report also says, will continue to dominate the overall bioplastics market through 2020. Drop-in bioplastics are non-biodegradable materials, derived from renewable raw materials offering identical technical properties to such fossil counterparts as PE, PET and PA. Bio-PET 30 will be the fastest growing segment in the non-biodegradable drop-in market, the study continues, as it delivers same performance as conventional PET with regard to re-sealability, versatility, durability, appearance, weight, and recyclability.
“Bio-based plastics feature a smaller carbon footprint compared to fossil-based materials, allowing users to meet their sustainability goals more easily. And, as a result of this greater market acceptance, bio-based plastics are increasingly being adopted in new end user industries—in many cases, backed by government policies promoting the use of eco-friendly bio-based and biodegradable products,” the report says. “On the negative side are the high production costs of bioplastics, which make them more costly to use. This so-called ‘green premium’ may well dampen market growth during the forecast period.”