Preservatives are substances or chemicals added to drugs, food, beverages, paints, cosmetics, and wood, in order to prevent microbial growth and undesirable changes in terms of both, physical and chemical properties. Preservatives are of two kinds, namely natural and synthetic, both of which are used to enhance the quality of the end product. Natural preservatives such as antioxidants, vitamin E, rosemary extracts, and seed extracts are readily available in nature and often obtained from plant sources. Synthetic preservatives such as benzoic acid, sodium nitrite, sulfur dioxide, and potassium sorbate, are chemical components processed and added to the end product. Growing health concerns among the global populace has caused an increasing demand for natural preservatives, in turn projecting immense growth for the preservatives market, over the forecast period. Positive growth outlook of the food industry in highly populous and emerging economies of India and China, further contribute to growth of the global preservative market.
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On the basis of function, the preservatives market is categorized into antimicrobial and antioxidants. Preservatives that are added to end products to arrest growth of microorganisms are called antimicrobial preservatives. Some of the common antimicrobial agents that are used as preservatives are benzoic acid, lactic acid, nitrate, nitrite, propionic acid and sulfites. Preservatives that are used to inhibit oxidation process, especially in stored food items are called antioxidants. Food items with high fat content tend to get damaged during oxidation process, antioxidants are used in such food items to counteract the oxidation process and significantly increase shelf life of packaged food items. Some of the major antioxidants that are used as preservatives are Vitamin C, Vitamin E, carotenoids, lutein, selenium, and lycopene.
In the construction industry, preservatives are widely used over wood, steel and glass materials to enhance its quality and increase its shelf life. In the pharmaceuticals industry and cosmetics industry preservatives are majorly used to increase the shelf life and enhance stability of products. Rapid deterioration in quality and effectiveness of cosmetic products are experienced due to the presence of microbes or water in the final product. Cosmetics preservatives are used as antioxidants, stabilizers, and antimicrobials in the formulation of face masks, sunscreens, scrubs, and lotions. Cosmetics preservatives are available as wet wipes, rinse off, and leave-on.
Preservatives Market Outlook – Growing Demand for Processed Food Is Fueling Market Growth
Rising demand for processed food due to busy lifestyle and increasing number of women in the workforce is projected to drive growth of the preservatives market, over the forecast period (2016–2024). In addition growing retail industry in emerging economies and popularity of processed food among the younger generation is also boosting growth of the market for processed food, which in turn is projected to drive market growth. According to a study conducted by Coherent Market Insights, the market for processed food is projected to reach US$ 88.2 billion by 2024. The rampant growth of the market for processed food, is expected to fuel growth of the preservatives market, owing to the application of preservatives in processed food to enhance its overall quality, taste and shelf life.
Preservatives Market Challenges – Stringent Government Rules and Regulations
Stringent regulatory scenario regarding the use of preservatives considering its negative health impact is a challenge for growth of the global preservatives market. Various authorities across the globe regulate usage of preservatives. Despite its usage in various end-use industries such as food and pharmaceutical drugs, preservatives are associated with a number of health issues such as cancer, hyperactivity, and heart issues. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) implemented certain guidelines for usage of preservatives in food and medicines. According to the FDA, ‘a chemical preservative should comply with purity specifications in regulations in 21 CFR 172, or in the Food Chemicals Codex’. Also, countries such as Finland, Norway, Austria, U.K., and France have banned synthetic food colorings, while the U.K. and Canada have banned usage of Olestra (a fat substitute preservative). Such regulations imposed on the usage of preservatives, inhibits growth of the preservatives industry to a certain extent.
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Asia Pacific is expected to be the fastest growing market for preservatives over the forecast period, owing to increasing demand for ready-to-consume food items and growing retail industry. North America is the largest market for preservatives, followed by Europe. These regions are expected to retain their dominance over the forecast period, attributing to the availability of retail outlets, busy lifestyle of consumers resulting in an increasing inclination towards ready-to-eat food products. Large untapped markets in countries such as India, Bangladesh, South Africa, China, Malaysia, and Mexico are projected to provide lucrative growth opportunities for the preservative manufacturers, in the near future.
Key players in the global preservatives market include Corbion N.V., Cargill Incorporated, Kerry Group, BASF SE, Chr. Hansen A/S, Archer Daniels Midland Company, E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company, and Celanese Corporation.