The market size of global pharmaceutical grade silica gel was valued at USD 40.8 million in the year 2015 and is anticipated to experience a substantial growth over the analysis period. The market will be driven by the increasing demand from major application industries such as drug carrier, desiccants, and adsorbent.
The desiccants are used to preserve and adsorb the water vapors in the formulation of a drug. The existence of excess moisture may harm the efficiency of the drug. Major pharmaceutical firms are adopting the on-going industry trends and are attaining economies of scale through utilization of cost reduction methods. The global market for desiccants is expected to be driven by the growth of biotech companies.
The desiccants dominated the global market. Major players are planning to improve their operating efficiencies, which would result in increasing the demand for the product. Packaging has been a crucial factor defining the quality of the drug, which is confirmed by the application of desiccants canisters.
The desiccants canisters are responsible to maintain the efficiency and provide protection for the drug. The main purpose of these canisters is for rapid insertion in the table bottles. The desiccant sachet contains silica gel that plays a significant role in the protection and moisture absorption.
The superior absorption ability at relatively high humidity has been a key factor for its usage in desiccants sachets. The constantly climbing sodium silicate prices owing to the rising energy and transportation costs are anticipated to adversely affect the specialty silica market, which will eventually impact the pharmaceutical grade silica gel market.
The industry is segmented into adsorbent, the drug carrier, glidant, desiccant and other excipients. The application segment of drug carrier is additionally divided into liquid drugs and scarcely soluble drugs. The silica gel protects antibiotic formulations from moisture and improves the storage stability and shelf life. The growth of the pharmaceutical sector is expected to remain a significant contributing factor over the forecast period.
The product is widely used in the application segment of desiccants on account of its ability to exhibit a comparatively lower vapor pressure than the ambient pressure. The desiccant substance is a hygroscopic element that withstands the state of dryness in the formulation of the drug. The performance varies with relative & absolute humidity and temperature, and its usage is defined after examining the condition in which it is being used.
In terms of the global volume share, Asia Pacific held 45.10%, followed by North America. Asia Pacific is also expected to witness the fastest growth on account of its increasing demand from the pharma industry for the purpose of protective packaging in the form of packets/bags, canisters and desiccants. In addition, abundant availability of sulfuric acid in the region is anticipated to boost the product demand in the near future.
The improving penetration of pharmaceutical excipients and ingredients in the biotech companies and specialty medicines has caused the cumulative progress over the recent past. Moreover, rising disposable incomes and developing healthcare infrastructure are also enhancing the expansion of the pharmaceutical industry in the region, particularly in India and China.
The leading firms are investing aggressively in order to increase their market share. The pharmaceutical sector in China has witnessed abundant investments in the recent years. The sales of drugs were estimated at over $115 billion in the year 2015. These factors are anticipated to drive the growth over the forecast period.
In the recent years, development of new products has been the key growth strategy adopted by the major players for the purpose of increasing their business presence. The major participants are emphasizing on R&D activities in order to develop new and innovative products with a view to strengthen their foothold and achieve a competitive edge.
The pharmaceutical grade silica gel market is highly fragmented in nature. The major players are E.I. DuPont Nemours and Company, Evonik Industries, Solvay S.A., W.R. Grace & Company., Dow and Clariant International Ltd
Application Outlook (Volume, Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2013 - 2025)
• Scarcely soluble drugs
• Liquid drugs
• Drug carrier
• Other excipients
Regional Outlook (Volume, Tons; Revenue, USD Million, 2013 - 2025)
• North America
• Asia Pacific
• Central & South America
• Middle East & Africa
Research Support Specialist, USA