Laminating adhesives are chemicals that enable the bonding of the plastic film to various substrates, either with the help of pressure or heat to protect the product from the external environment or improve its appearance. Additional benefits provided by laminating adhesives include flame resistance, chemical resistance, thermoforming ability, and gas permeability reduction.
Many flexible packaging used in today's products would have been impossible with the use of adhesive systems, such as laminating adhesives. The growth of various sectors, such as food and beverage, pharmaceutical, and automobile, has seen to match the development of the laminating adhesive and work in tandem. The laminating adhesives market is demonstrating a strong growth rate, especially from the economies in transition where there is a growing demand for food and beverage and pharmaceutical sectors.
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Food and beverage is the fastest-growing sector globally, especially in Europe, where it is one of the most prominent contributors to the region's GDP. As per Food Drink Europe, the total trade accounted for around USD 122 billion, of which Europe held around 18% share. Additionally, the food and beverage sector's annual turnover was around USD 1.22 trillion in the year 2017, and this contributed about 2.1% of the total gross value added to the European Union's economy. This is also backed by increasing investments of about USD 3.2 billion in research and development.
Fast-paced research and development due to an increase in expenditure by various companies and government agencies in the pharma and chemical sectors, coupled with the advent of artificial intelligence and big data, the growth in the pharma sector is experiencing huge strides in terms of the development of new medicines and cures. There has been a rise in personalized care, and innovative treatments have become a common phenomenon due to research in the pharmaceutical sector.
There has been growing investments by private players to come up with new medicinal formulations and treatments to treat rare diseases. As per the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EPIFA), the pharmaceutical sector in the European Union invested around USD 38,550 million in 2018 in research and development alone.
Furthermore, the recent coronavirus pandemic that has affected the globe has brought together all doctors and research scientists to come up with a vaccine and drugs. This has been backed by billions of dollars of investments from private and government investments.
The future of the pharmaceutical sector is likely to witness positive growth in the coming decades. The laminating adhesives are used as packaging for tablets, pills, pellets, and beads as it provides a protective layer from oxygen, humidity, and other environmental phenomena. The
Asia-Pacific is home to the most advanced economies globally, such as South Korea and Japan, and now, even China is now considered one among them, with India fast catching up. The region is the largest in terms of geography and has an abundance of natural resources, coupled with readily available labor, which makes it an attractive destination for foreign players to enter the market.
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Favorable investment climate due to the passing of legislation that allows easy access to key global players to establish themselves in the region is further creating a base for fast development. Furthermore, the setting up of Special Economic Zones (SEZ) that are cost-effective export hubs with various tax benefits and subsidies are propelling demand for this region. India, Malaysia, China, and Thailand provide ample opportunities for laminating adhesives manufacturers globally.
Food and beverage is a fast-growing sector that is witnessing high demand, mainly due to the growing population levels, combined with rising disposable incomes and availability of a variety of foods and beverages due to the advent of globalization.
Countries such as the U.S and Europe are the global leaders in the food and beverages market and are the trendsetters for new packaging and labeling of products. These trends also influence the way the beverages are consumed. For instance, Glass bottles and aluminum cans were ruling the beverages market a decade ago in various Asia-Pacific markets. This has been replaced by the laminated pouches with an attractive design and improved shelf life.
Furthermore, aggressive marketing for new products in innovative packaging creates upswings for market growth. Additionally, India is one of the fast-growing economies for the development of the food and beverage sector. As per the India Brand Equity Foundation, the Indian food market was valued at USD 300 billion in 2019.
The extensive use of laminating adhesives in the packaging of food and beverages is likely to create upswings for market growth. The beauty industry is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the region. According to the India Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF), India's beauty industry was valued at around USD 14 billion in 2019 due to the increasing consumer consciousness about beauty and personal care products. Increasing internet penetration is further driving the growth of the sector. As per IBEF, the internet sales of beauty and personal care products rose to around USD 400 million in 2019 from around USD 100 million a few years ago.
India has about 22 out of the world's 30 most polluted cities. People in the region are moving towards environmentally friendly, organic, and ethical products for their skin to protect themselves from the rising pollution. Beauty and cosmetic cream require special packaging that uses laminating adhesives to improve the attractiveness of packaging and also increase the shelf life and keep the chemical formulation unchanged.