For the longest time, petroleum-based solvents were used across a host of industries, such as printing inks, adhesives and sealants, cosmetics, paints and coatings, commercial and domestic cleaning, and pharmaceuticals. However, owing to the several negative aspects associated with these synthetic solvents, focus shifted to the development of natural, bio-based solvents with little or no adverse impact on the environment as well as human health. As a result, green and bio-based solvents emerged as an up and coming market in the overall solvents market.
Companies are looking for new and innovative raw materials for the production of green and bio-based solvents by conducting research and development activities. For instance, the Gandhi Institute of Technology and Management (GITAM) in India has found that shrimp waste can be used as a cheap and natural source of astaxanthin, which finds application as a pigment in the nutraceutical industry. In a recently published study, Kandra Prameela and her team are looking at the various methods for astaxanthin extraction using organic means.
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Vertec Biosolvents Inc., Elevance Renewable Sciences, Inc., Archer Daniels Midland Company, Cargill Inc., Florida Chemical Company, Corbion N.V., Galactic, BioMCN, and Cobalt Technologies are some of the prominent companies in the green and bio-based solvents market. Most companies have been relying on the development of newer products and on forming strategic partnerships in order to strengthen their position in the market. Expanding production capacities with the aid of improved raw materials and advanced technologies is also a key growth strategy adopted by leading players.
Given the soaring commercialization of green and bio-based solvents and their constantly widening scope of application, more and more players are looking to invest in this up and coming market, posing a severe threat to existing suppliers and manufacturers. These new players come with low-cost offerings, giving current and established players a run for their money.
The potential of green and bio-based solvents is such that most regions across the globe present lucrative opportunities for players in varying degrees. North America, the global leader, has been consistently been driven by the growing demand for environment-friendly products that adhere to various norms and ensure sustainability. The easy availability of raw materials and technological expertise also enables the greater production of and demand for green and bio-based solvents.
In the southern half of the Americas, the growing demand for the same stemming from Brazil and Argentina’s building and construction sector is the key factor driving the Latin America green and bio-based solvents market. This market is poised for strong growth over the coming years. Perhaps the strongest contender in the global market, Asia Pacific is likely to be fueled by the demand for green and bio-based solvents to be used in pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, printing inks, agrochemicals, and paints and coatings.