Market Overview

The antimicrobial plastics are the special type of polymeric materials that are treated with antimicrobial agents or additives such as silver, copper, zinc, triclosan, and oxybisphenoxarsine. These types of plastics exhibit an ability to inhibit the growth of microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi, or protozoans and are highly engineered to mimic antimicrobial peptides, which are used by the immune systems of living organisms to kill bacteria and other pathogens. The untreated plastic products are largely prone to attack by microbes which may cause discoloration, bad odor, and rapid degradation of the plastic materials. According to the MRFR analysis, the global antimicrobial plastics market was valued at USD 30 billion in 2018 and is projected to register a considerable CAGR of 8% during the forecast period, 2019–2024. The growing popularity of antibacterial polymer packaging, especially in the medicine, healthcare, and food industry and rising concerns pertaining to the prevention of contamination risk in medical equipment are expected to fuel the demand for antimicrobial plastics during the forecast period. The emergence of popular eco-friendly concept “Construction Microbial Biotechnology”, which uses low cost, sustainable, and microbial cements, grouts, polysaccharides, and bio-plastics is expected to offer significant growth opportunities for the players operating in the global market. However, fluctuating raw material prices and stringent government regulations pertaining to the usage of plastics are likely to hamper the global market growth during the assessment period.

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Competitive Analysis

The prominent players in the global antimicrobial plastics market are BASF SE (Germany), Clariant AG (Switzerland), Lonza (Switzerland), Polyone Corporation (US), Microban International Ltd. (US), PARX Plastics N.V. (The Netherlands), King Plastic Corporation (US), BioCote Limited (UK), Sanitized AG (Switzerland), and Americhem Inc (US), among others.

Market Segmentation

The global antimicrobial plastics market has been segmented on the basis of additive, type, application, and region.

On the basis of additive, the global market has been divided into silver, copper, zinc, triclosan, oxybisphenoxarsine, and others. Among these, the silver segment held the largest market share in 2018 due to its significant antibacterial properties, and high resistance and toxicity towards fungi, germs, algae, and other microbes. However, the antimicrobial property of silver does not have any negative impact on humans, unless excessively consumed.

Based on type, the global antimicrobial plastics market has been categorized into commodity plastics, engineering plastics, and performance plastics. The commodity plastics segment has been further sub-segmented into polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP), polystyrene (PS), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA), polyurethane (PU), and polyethylene terephthalate (PET). The engineering plastics segment has been further categorized into acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), polyamide (PA), polycarbonate (PC), polyoxymethylene (POM), and others. The commodity plastics accounted for the major market share in 2018 owing to the growing use of these types of plastics in almost all the major end-use industries, such as automotive, packaging, and building and construction.

By application, the global antimicrobial plastics market has been divided into packaging, healthcare & medical, food processing & handling equipment, sports & recreational equipment, automotive, consumer goods, building & construction, and others. Among these, the packaging segment was the largest consumer of the product in 2018 and is projected to register a considerable CAGR during the assessment period. This is attributed to the growing demand for antimicrobial plastics in the food, medical, healthcare, and packaging applications.

Regional Analysis

Asia-Pacific, Europe, North America, Latin America, and the Middle East & Africa are the five key regions studied for the global antimicrobial plastics market. North America accounted for the largest market share in 2018 owing to the surging demand for the product in medical and food packaging applications. The US is expected to be the major contributor to the regional market growth on account of the growing demand for antimicrobial plastics in the leading end-use industries such as packaging and medical.

The market in Europe is closely following North America, in terms of market share. This is mainly attributed to the rapid growth in the demand for the product in automobile and healthcare applications. The Asia-Pacific market is expected to witness rapid growth during the forecast period on account of rising healthcare spending by the governments. The Middle East & African and Latin American markets are expected to exhibit healthy CAGR during the forecast period. This is mainly attributed to the sizeable growth potential of these regions on account of rapid industrialization and increasing construction activities.

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