The global PVOH films market size is projected to exhibit significant growth in the next few years, and grow at a CAGR of 4.1% over the forecast period (2019 - 2027).

Market Overview

PVOH, also known as polyvinyl alcohol, PVA, or vinyl alcohol, is a colourless and odorless water-soluble, synthetic polymer present in the form of granules or powder. It is derived through the process of hydroxylation from polyvinyl acetate. Owing to properties such as water solubility, film-forming, resistance to grease, oil, and solvents, as well as flexibility, high tensile strength, and aroma and oxygen barring properties, and biodegradability, PVOH finds major industrial application in manufacturing and packaging of LCD panels, sunglasses, lenses, household appliances, as well as packaging of pigments, chemicals, dyes, and bleaches. It is also used in the chemical and agriculture industries for packaging of harmful pesticides and herbicides, and in the food industry for packaging of products such as chocolate and coffee.

Market Dynamics

The Food and Drug Administration has approved PVOH films for close contact with eatables, owing to the substance’s non-toxicity and biocompatibility which doesn’t produce any harmful side-effects upon consumption. In addition to these advantages, PVOH is highly resistant to solvents and oils, which has led to the FDA considering it suitable for various packaging applications such as detergents, soluble laundry bags, agricultural chemicals, pharmaceuticals, and films for other toxic chemicals. Improving standard of living across the world as a result of favourable disposable income, and hygiene consciousness among the world population is expected to generate considerable demand for detergents and laundry sacks which are manufactured using PVOH films. Increase in demand for packaging of agrochemicals such as insecticides, pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers is also projected to drive growth of the global PVOH films market.

PVA films used for manufacturing polarizer films for LCD panels, sunglasses, and lenses are expected to account for the highest market share owing to a high amount of polarizer production around the world. Application of polyvinyl alcohol in the pharmaceutical industry is also significant as it is used as a coating for capsules and drugs. It is worth noting, however, that pharmaceutical application of PVOH has been limited owing to stricter regulations placed on food and drug manufacturing.

Market Outlook

North America, Asia Pacific, and Europe are the largest markets for PVOH films, with Asia Pacific accounting for maximum production, and North America emerging as the largest consumer market for PVOH films. Asia Pacific is estimated to be the fastest growing market as a result of rapid industrialization and growing demand for PVOH from the packaging and agricultural sectors. Increasing demand from emerging economies in the region such as China, India, Malaysia, and Taiwan is expected to contribute to the overall growth of the market in the region. High demand for PVOH in detergents, food packaging, and healthcare products is propelling growth of the PVOH films market in the North America region. Countries such as U.S. and Canada are projected to account for major market share in the near future. Growth of the building sector, as well as food packaging industry in Europe will result in a significant demand for PVOH films from the region. Other regions such as Africa, Latin America, and Africa are also expected to emerge as key contributors to the overall growth of the global PVOH films market.

Key Players

Some of the prominent players in the global PVOH market include The Nippon Synthetic Chemical Industry Co., Ltd., Kuraray Co. Ltd., The Dow Chemical Company, Celanese Corporation, and Wacker Chemie AG.

Key Developments

Key players are focusing on providing latest and advanced technology and new product launches in order to build its position in the global PVOH films market. For instance, Ecosol is a biodegradable, water soluble, polyvinyl alcohol (PVOH) film which is suited for different packaging applications include cleaners, detergents, pigments, concrete additives, agricultural products, water treatment products, laundry bags, etc. This new polyvinyl alcohol (PVOH) film provide a safe, convenient, and economical solution for the consumer.

In March 2019, the study was done by Y. Liu et al.  to develop the active food packaging materials which has antioxidant and antibacterial properties. In this study, the biodegradable films were made with different composite material contains tea polyphenols (TP) and polyvinyl alcohol (PVA). Polyvinyl alcohol is a synthetic alcohol polymer which is water soluble and used as barrier layer for paper packaging films such as PET used in plastic bottles packaging.

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