The global Lactic Acid market size is expected to be worth around US$ 5.10 billion by 2030, according to a new report by Vision Research Reports.
The global Lactic Acid market size was valued at US$ 2.10 billion in 2020 and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 8.04% during forecast period 2021 to 2030.
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The market growth can be attributed to the increasing demand for lactic acid in various end-use industries, including industrial, food and beverages, and pharmaceuticals, especially in emerging economies such as India, China, and Indonesia. Additionally, demand for this product as a feedstock in the production of (PLA) is anticipated to drive the market globally.
Various raw materials used for the production of lactic acid include carbohydrates such as corn, sugarcane, sugar beet, and tapioca. A large share of this product produced globally is obtained through the fermentation process owing to its lower production costs as well as rising consumer awareness regarding sustainable and environmentally friendly products. The production process is commercially mature with a significant number of manufacturers, including Corbion, NatureWorks LLC, Galactic, and Henan Jindan Lactic Acid Technology Co., Ltd., using it.
The raw materials used for the commercial synthesis of this product include maltose or starch, lactose, sucrose, and glucose. These raw materials are derived from various feedstocks, such as barley malt, whey, molasses, and beet sugar, which are used to produce lactic acid via microbial fermentation. The cost of raw material is a key factor to be considered in the fermentation process for the commercial production of this product. They may specifically cater to application areas such as industrial, food and beverage, pharmaceuticals, personal care, chemicals, and agrochemicals.
Polylactic acid is predominantly used to manufacture microwaveable containers, including disposable cutlery and food containers. Multiple beneficial properties such as improved aesthetic appeal and resistance to grease and oil are positively influencing the demand for polylactic acid in the formulation of food packaging products across the globe, further triggering the lactic acid demand.
The sugarcane raw material segment accounted for the largest revenue share of over 39.0% in 2020. This is attributed to the abundant availability of biomass materials. Raw sugar extracted from the sugar beet or sugarcane is one of the major feedstocks used in the manufacturing of lactic acid. Sugarcane contributes notably to the development of bioplastics and the growth of the food and biochemical industries.
Corn accounted for a significant share in 2020. It has emerged as a prominent raw material owing to its low cost, sustainability, and abundance in nature. Rising environmental concerns, sustainable processing practices, and a limited supply of petroleum feedstock are anticipated to augment the demand for corn-based lactic acid products over the forecast period.
Yeast extract is one of the most commonly used ingredients for the production of lactic acid. However, the high production cost associated with this process gave rise to an alternative, namely Corn Steep Liquor (CSL) derived from corn as a by-product from the corn steeping process. The demand for corn-based lactic acid as a pH regulator, microbial activity enhancer, and acidulant in the food and beverages industry is expected to boost the market growth over the coming years.
Other numerous inexpensive raw materials used in the production of lactic acid are starchy and cellulosic materials, such as cassava, sweet sorghum, potato, wheat, rye-barley, rice, xylan, galactan, lignin, and other filamentous fungi, such as Lactic Acid Bacteria (LAB) and Rhizopus.
The polylactic acid application segment accounted for the largest revenue share of more than 28.0% in 2020. This is attributed to its durability, mechanical strength, and transparency as compared to other biodegradable plastics. Rising demand for bio-degradable plastic materials, the constant growth of the automotive industry, and increasing demand from the end-use industries are the major driving factors for this application segment.
In the transportation and automotive sectors, numerous vehicle interior components such as interior trim, under the hood components, and engine components are produced using lightweight materials. The lightweight components reduce the weight of the vehicle and enhance performance. This has led to a rise in demand for sustainable bioplastic materials to increase fuel efficiency and toughness, which, in turn, will propel the demand for PLA.
Food and beverages emerged as the second-largest application segment in the year 2020. Lactic acid has the ability to enhance flavor and increase the shelf life of food and beverages by controlling the development of pathogenic microorganisms. Owing to these properties, the demand for this product is anticipated to surge with its growing penetration in the seafood, poultry, and meat industries.
Lactic acid serves as a vital feedstock in the production of PLA, which is further used to manufacture biodegradable plastic. These biodegradable plastics are used in numerous industries, such as packaging and chemical. Lactic acid is a natural solvent used as a metal cleaning agent as well as in mechanical cleaning applications.
The pharmaceutical industry has been a key component in the growth of this market over the past few years on account of the increasing application of lactic acid in drug manufacturing and as an electrolyte in intravenous solutions used for supplementing the required bodily fluids. Properties of lactic acid such as metal sequestration, pH regulator, effectiveness in being a natural body constituent, and chiral intermediate in pharmaceutical products are expected to boost the growth of the pharmaceutical industry. The personal care application segment is expected to witness significant growth over the forecast period, which can be attributed to increasing product use in skincare products. Lactic acid-based skin moisturizers improve dry skin, remove acne scars, improve discoloration, and prevent damage to skin tissues.
North America accounted for the largest revenue share of more than 45.0% in 2020. This is attributed to the growing personal care, pharmaceutical, and food and beverages industries. The expanding pharmaceutical industry in the U.S. as a result of increasing expenditures on medicines is anticipated to have a positive impact on the market growth in this region.
The market in North America is expected to grow on account of the presence of various personal care and cosmetic companies, such as Maybelline New York, Procter & Gamble, Colgate-Palmolive Company, Avon, Unilever, and Johnson & Johnson Private Limited. Moreover, the robust manufacturing base of global cosmetic manufacturers, such as Procter & Gamble, Unilever, and Johnson & Johnson Private Limited, in the U.S. is expected to promote the demand for personal care products.
Rising demand for PLA owing to the U.S. government efforts toward reducing carbon footprint, high demand from packaging applications, and the growth of the pharmaceutical and personal care industries are expected to propel the growth of the market over the forecast period.
- BASF SE
- Musashino Chemical (China) Co., Ltd.
- TEIJIN LIMITED
- Raw Material Outlook
- Other Crops
- Application Outlook
- Food & Beverages
- Personal Care
- Polylactic Acid (PLA)
- Regional Outlook
- North America
- Asia Pacific
- Central & South America (CSA)
- Middle East & Africa (MEA)
- North America
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