22 October 2009 17:17 [Source: ICIS news]
By Andy Brice
LONDON (ICIS news)--Consumers’ desire for natural products derived from renewable or recycled resources has helped Europe’s market for specialty ingredients in home and fabric care formulations prosper despite the global downturn, a consultancy said on Thursday.
Research and consultancy firm Frost & Sullivan said that besides addressing environmental concerns, the market was also being driven by the need to improve ease of use and quality of life, as well as minimising the risk from bacteria.
“The growing demand for more efficient and technically novel chemicals to assist in daily home and fabric care tasks has rejuvenated this mature market as producers focus on addressing the evolving demands of consumers,” said industry analyst Leonidas Dokos.
The home and fabric care specialty ingredients market - which includes specialty surfactants, functional polymers, fabric enhancers, active ingredients and rheology modifiers – achieved revenues of €615.8m ($923.7m) last year. These are projected to rise to €706.2m in 2015, according to Frost & Sullivan.
Investment in innovation and maintaining a healthy product pipeline was essential to future growth, added Dokos.
Last year, however, the chemicals sector was alone among the top 15 sectors globally that displayed a reduction in research and development (R&D) investment of 1.3%. Similarly, the household goods sector also saw a drop of 6.1%.
“When combined with plant shutdowns, recently introduced legislative frameworks that increase costs (such as Reach) and the ongoing economic uncertainty, it becomes clear that the suppliers to the home and fabric care industry are facing a challenging environment,” said Dokos.
($1 = €0.66)
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