Report: glycerol market expected to reach $2.1 billion in 2018

By Transparency Market Research | March 14, 2013

According to a new market report published by Transparency Market Research, “Glycerol Market by Source (Biodiesel, Fatty Acids & Fatty Alcohols), by Applications (Personal Care, Alkyd Resins, Polyether Polyols, Others), Downstream Opportunities (Propylene Glycol, Epichlorohydrin, 1, 3 Propanediol and Others)—Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Trends, Growth and Forecast, 2012-2018,” the global demand for glycerol was 1,995.5 kilo tons in 2011 and is expected to reach 3,060.4 kilo tons by 2018, growing at a CAGR of 6.3 percent from 2012 to 2018. In terms of revenues, glycerol demand is expected to reach $2.1 billion in 2018, growing at a CAGR of 7.7 percent from 2012 to 2018.

Browse the full report here

Growing demand from the major end-use industries such as personal care, pharmaceuticals and foods and beverages is expected to drive glycerol demand over the next five years. In addition, over the last three years, glycerol has been increasingly explored as a platform chemical for a host of renewable chemical intermediates. However; uncertainty of feedstock supply, coupled with low refining margins have emerged as a key challenge for market participants.  

Over supply of glycerol in recent times owing to the surge in biodiesel production has resulted in glycerol prices holding steady. Some of the potential applications that are currently under investigation in the global market include production of propylene glycol (PG), epichlorohydrin (ECH), and 1,3-propanediol (PDO) using glycerol. These compounds are traditionally manufactured using conventional feedstock (petro-based) but glycerol helps in producing these compounds in a more environmental friendly manner and has the potential to be more economical compared to synthetic counterparts. Many companies such as Archer Daniel Midland (ADM), Solvay, and Dow Chemical Co. have already ventured into producing PG, ECH and PDO using glycerol as their main feedstock.

Asia Pacific is the leading consumer of glycerol and accounted for approximately 36 percent of the total glycerol consumed in 2011. Rapidly changing consumer lifestyle, mainly in emerging economies of China and India is one of the major factors behind the growing demand for glycerol in the region.

Personal care and pharmaceutical industry are key application segments for glycerol, accounting for more than 37 percent of the total glycerol consumed in 2011. Food and beverages industry is expected to be the fastest growing market for glycerol, at an estimated CAGR of 7.3 percent from 2012 to 2018.

The global market for glycerol is dominated by South East Asian (mainly Malaysian) companies such as IOI Group, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad, Emery Oleochemicals and Wilmar International. Some of the other companies operating in the market include Sofiproteol Group, Procter & Gamble, and Croda.

The study estimates and forecasts the market for glycerol by its production from various sources both in terms of volumes and revenues from 2011 to 2018. The report also estimates and forecasts various applications of glycerol from 2011 to 2018. The report segments the global glycerol market as:

Glycerol Market, by Production Source:


-Fatty Acids

-Fatty Alcohols

-Soap Industry

Glycerol Market, by Application:

-Personal Care and Pharmaceuticals

-Alkyd Resins

-Foods and Beverages

-Polyether Polyols

-Tobacco Humectants

-Other (including explosives, textile, paper etc)

Glycerol Market, by Geography:

-North America


-Asia Pacific

-Rest of the World (RoW)


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