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The global bioplastics market size was valued at USD 7.56 billion in 2022 and is projected to grow from USD 8.72 billion in 2023 to USD 31.66 billion by 2030, exhibiting a CAGR of 20.2% during the forecast period.
Bioplastics are materials derived from renewable sources that can reduce plastic waste generation. These plastics are commonly sourced from renewable biomass sources including plant starch, cellulose, natural sugars, vegetable fats, and waste oils. Furthermore, novel sources, such as seaweeds, insects, and animals are also being researched for this purpose. Not all sources are biodegradable, however, a large volume of them can be naturally degraded in a short time, making them superior to conventional plastic.
As an alternative to conventional plastics, the use of biomass-based plastics is being promoted for applications wherein the former are generally utilized including packaging, textile, electronic components, automotive parts, and furniture. Due to the stringent laws and legislations imposed by numerous agencies on the usage of non-renewable, single-use plastics, industries have shifted their focus on developing and utilizing biodegradable grades of plastics for numerous purposes. The development of environmentally-viable plastics is a field wherein research activities are being carried out on an enormous scale by both individuals and corporations to create a sustainable future for the next generation. As a result, these factors are anticipated to boost the bioplastics market growth.
Decreased Prices of Conventional Plastics during Pandemic Threatened Bioplastics Adoption
The COVID-19 pandemic impacted the global supply chain by negatively affecting production and transportation, leading to a decrease in the prices of conventional plastics. The utilization of crude oil for fuel was the lowest since World War II, which lowered the prices of conventional plastics. This was the primary reason for the slow growth of the market.
Furthermore, laws on single-use plastics and green investments announced by many governments and organizations were postponed due to the pandemic, reducing the uptake of bio-based alternatives. However, sustainable plastics can prove to be an excellent alternative to conventional plastics, which are in high demand due to increase in food, pharma, and PPE packaging. This factor provided an alternative growth pathway to this market in the wake of the pandemic.
Increase in Product Demand from Automotive Industry to Create Market Growth Prospects
A decrease in fuel consumption and emissions by reducing the vehicle weight is the main objective and also a challenge for the automotive industry. Bioplastics have proven to be suitable materials to achieve this goal. The key automobile manufacturers have adopted smart plastics, such as bio-PA and bio-PP, to reduce the environmental impact and provide additional strength to the automobile components. According to the European Association, the technical application of these plastics in the automotive industry is one of the upcoming applications, thereby increasing their volume of production to about 170 KT by 2024. Thus, the high demand for bioplastics in the automotive industry owing to their superior properties is expected to create growth prospects for the companies in the market.
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Increasing Demand for Eco-Friendly Plastics from Packaging Industry to Propel Market Growth
Biodegradable plastics have found applications in multiple industries, but the most noticeable application of such plastics is observed in the packaging industry as they portray similar properties to those of their conventional counterparts. They are utilized in both rigid and flexible packaging. With an increase in e-commerce activities globally, a sizable amount of packaging material is expected to be used in the future. As bio-based plastics can easily replace conventional plastics, their utilization can be an excellent alternative to reducing plastic pollution.
The demand for renewable feedstock-based plastics is also increasing from industries, such as food and pharmaceuticals. Besides this, the demand for ready-to-eat products has gained traction in both developed and emerging economies. Hence, the manufacturers of such products have actively sought packaging materials that are safe and inert toward the packaged products and have a low-to-nil impact on the environment. These product strategies will boost the bioplastics market share in the global market.
Demand for Compostable Plastics to Improve Soil Quality will Aid Market Growth
Plastics find tremendous application in the fields of agriculture and horticulture. For instance, they are used to make greenhouses, storage bags, bins, and silos. Furthermore, the existing semi-intensive and intensive farming practices involve using huge quantities of mulching films and harvest-protection bags to prevent the growth of weeds, protect crops from pests, and regulate soil moisture & nutrient content to create a beneficial micro-climate. However, conventional plastic is not biodegradable and stays in the environment for multiple harvest seasons. It causes damage to the environment and affects the growth of crops by restricting the access of roots to water and nutrients in the soil.
Due to these factors, many companies producing agriculture-based plastic products have sought biodegradable plastics using renewable and sustainable raw materials. These plastics are both technically and economically viable. Aside from promoting plant growth, such compostable plastics break down in the natural environment and contribute to enriching the soil. Thus, the demand for such bio-based plastics is rising in agriculture and horticulture, which will bode well for the global market growth during the forecast period.
High Cost Compared to Conventional Plastics to Restrain Market Growth
Even though biodegradability is a definitive advantage, most of the bioplastic grades require highly specific industrial composting processes to disintegrate and only a handful of countries have the required infrastructure to process these products. As a result, they may either enter landfills or contaminate the recycling feedstock, thereby harming the environment. Hence, a separate mechanism is required to discard such plastics, which results in higher product cost.
The land required for biodegradable plastic production competes with food production as the feedstock crops used in the former’s manufacturing processes are generally used to feed people across the world. The Plastic Pollution Coalition reports that to meet the current global demand for bioplastics, an area of 13,800 sq. km. will be required to grow feedstock crops. For comparison, this area is larger than Belgium, the Netherlands, and Denmark. These factors have increased the price of this product compared to that of conventional plastics. According to the Earth Institute of Columbia University, PLA can be 20-50% costlier than its counterparts due to the complex process used to convert corn and sugarcane into the lactide monomers for PLA.
Biodegradable Plastics to Generate Higher Revenue due to its Rising Preference from Packaging Industry
The market is segmented into biodegradable and non-biodegradable, based on type.
The biodegradable segment accounts for the largest market share due to the high demand for this product from packaging, textiles, agriculture & horticulture, and consumer goods industries. These industries prefer biodegradable plastics as they offer the required performance characteristics with the added benefit of being biologically sustainable. Biodegradable plastics are further categorized into starch blends, polylactic acid (PLA), polybutylene adipate terephthalate (PBAT), polybutylene succinate (PBS), polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA), and other biodegradables. PLA holds a major share in the market among these segments owing to its heavy uptake across the packaging industry.
The non-biodegradable segment has gained notable traction in food packaging, automotive parts, and consumer goods manufacturing. Furthermore, these plastics are utilized to carry bags & bottles, electronic equipment, and automotive housings due to their high strength and durability. They are also used as substitutes for high-performance glass components. The market segment is further categorized into bio-polyethylene terephthalate (Bio-PET), bio-polyamide (Bio-PA), bio-polyethylene (Bio-PE), bio-polytrimethylene terephthalate (Bio-PTT), and other non-biodegradables. The dominant shareholder among these sub-segments is Bio-PET, owing to its extensive application in packaging, consumer goods, and electronics industries.
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Rigid Packaging is anticipated to Exhibit a Rapid Growth owing to Increasing Demand from Shipping Companies
Based on application, the market is segmented into flexible packaging, textiles, automotive & transportation, rigid packaging, agriculture & horticulture, consumer goods, and others.
The rigid packaging segment is expected to remain dominant. In rigid packaging applications, bio- based plastics have found major traction as shipping companies are seeking sustainable yet sturdy packaging products. The increasing utilization of flexible packaging in industries, such as food and pharmaceuticals is expected to provide growth opportunities to the segment in the global market during the forecast period. The rigid packaging segment is further sub-divided into bottles & jars, trays, and others, while flexible packaging is further categorized into shopping/waste bags, pouches, and others.
The primary concern of automotive manufacturers is to reduce the fuel consumption and weight of the vehicle. Bio-based plastics are well suited for this purpose and have thus witnessed high demand from the automotive industry. Properties, such as high strength-to-weight ratio, durability, rust-proof, and self-heating have fueled the demand for such plastics in automotive applications.
Europe Bioplastics Market Size, 2019-2030 (USD Billion)
Europe Bioplastics Market Size, 2019-2030 (USD Billion)
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The market size in Europe stood at USD 3.68 billion in 2022. Europe is a crucial hub as it is the leading region in research & development and consumption of this product. Currently, Europe holds about 25% of the total bioplastic production as per data by European Bioplastics. Additionally, a robust automotive industry and the increasing demand for bio-based packaging products by various manufacturers in the region are expected to favor the market’s growth.
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Asia Pacific has shown robust development as it has the largest production capabilities. According to a report by European Bioplastics, about 56% of the product is manufactured in the region. The industry is expected to grow rapidly in this region as China is focusing on implementing its foreign investment law, which was delayed due to the global pandemic. The booming packaging industry shall further bolster the regional market growth.
North America is projected to experience steady growth in the global market due to the rising demand for lightweight automobile parts and electronic goods in the region. Consumer goods is another vertical that shall fuel the regional market growth owing to high living standards of the people, who prefer quality products.
The increasing demand for bioplastics in agriculture and horticulture sectors is one of the vital factors influencing the Rest of the World market. Furthermore, the expansion of the food products manufacturing industry shall be the region's growth defining factor. With the global community seeking restrictions on utilizing conventional plastics, these manufacturers have sought sustainable solutions for packaging their products.
Capacity Expansion and Collaborations to Form Essential Aspects of Growth for Key Players
Capacity expansion and collaborations across the value chain are important strategies for companies to maintain their market position. Novamont is one of the key players operating in the market. The company operates four production sites and two research centers and has a distribution network spread across 25 countries. Additionally, it has innovated five proprietary technologies and filed over 1,800 patent applications. It dedicates around 5% of its annual revenue for research, development, and innovation, and promotes a bio-economy model based on efficient resource usage and regeneration.
The market research report offers an in-depth analysis of the industry and highlights key factors such as leading players, types, and applications. Also, it offers insights into the market trends and highlights vital industry developments. In addition to the factors mentioned above, the report encompasses various factors that have contributed to the growth of the market in recent years.
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CAGR of 20.2% from 2023 to 2030
Value (USD Billion) and Volume (Kiloton)
By Type, Application, and Geography
Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was valued at USD 7.56 billion in 2022 and is projected to reach USD 31.66 billion by 2030.
In 2022, the market value stood at USD 7.56 billion.
Registering a CAGR of 20.2%, the market will exhibit rapid growth during the forecast period of 2023-2030.
The flexible packaging segment is expected to be the leading segment in this market during the forecast period.
Increasing demand for environment-friendly plastics from the packaging industry will lead the market growth.
Braskem, Arkema S.A., Novamont, and LyondellBasell are the leading players in this market.
Germany held the largest share in the global market in 2022.
The demand for compostable plastics is expected to drive the product adoption over the forecast period.
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