Biocides are substances that kill or inhibit all life forms when introduced in sufficient concentration and/or duration. They are used to control harmful organisms and control bacterial and fungal growth. Different types of biocide such as halogen compounds, metallic compounds, organosulfurs, organic acids, phenolic, etc. are used for various applications in personal care, water treatment, wood preservation, food and beverage, paints and coatings, and others. Growth in water treatment market on account of increasing water consumption due to population growth, changing food habits, and climate change is a major driver for global biocide market.
Biocides are also used as additives in polymers for preventing the growth of bacteria or fungi and also to prevent degradation of polymer’s physical and sensorial properties, both within the material and at its surface. The incorporation of biocides in plastics and rubbers helps in reducing cost and effort required in cleaning especially, in demanding sectors such as food processing plants, hospitals, and home care.
Biocides are becoming compliant to environment regulations as more and more companies are meeting the regulations. The newer breed of biocide, which have lesser environmental impact and better performance features are key drivers of the biocide market. Higher priced specialty biocides are providing stiff competition to the commodity biocides.
Biocide market is also witnessing an increase in demand for environmentally friendly biocides in disinfectants and sanitizers in household, industrial, and institutional cleaners as compared to other biocide formulations. Other applications of biocides such as health care industry are growing due to increasing health consciousness thus leading to need for protection from infections.
The best growth opportunities for the biocide products are in the Asia-Pacific and Eastern Europe region, whereas mature North American and West European markets are predictable to register a modest growth. Moreover, China will be the fastest-growing country in global biocide market as its strong economic growth continues. In mature markets such as the U.S., Western Europe, and Japan, growth will be driven more by a shift to higher value products rather than by significant volume pick-up.