Various industries require liquid filtration technology to separate unwanted solid particles from the liquid. The kind of liquid filters available in the market varies as per their application and requirement. In terms of fabric material, there is polymer, cotton, or even metal filters available for filtration. The filter medium for filtration has more than 20 varieties, which can be broadly segmented into woven, nonwoven, and mesh.
Polymer nonwoven filters are the hottest trend in the filtration market and are likely to be the fastest-growing. Demand for nonwovens is increasing due to their specific advantages in terms of trapping the finest dust particles. Metal filters are mostly used in wire mesh format, where precision wire cloth comes from Europe based companies, such as G. Bopp and Co. AG and Haver & Boecker OHG. In contrast, less precision wire cloth is manufactured mostly in Asia.
A liquid filter made up of a particular fabric has different applications and work at different temperatures accordingly. Cotton can be used in aqueous solutions, while polymers such as polyester, PVC, PTFE, and polypropylene can be virtually used almost everywhere, including acids, alkalis, solvents, oxidizing agents, and petrochemicals.
The market for liquid filters is reaching its mature phase. Almost every player in the food and beverage, pharmaceutical, chemical, and mining industries have already adopted liquid filters in their systems. Liquid filter manufacturers are constantly trying various filter materials and media to develop liquid filters that can improve efficiency, reduce costs, and save electricity.
Liquid filters are chosen according to specific parameters such as size range, effective size, and the type of liquid that needs to be filtered, and its flow rate. Liquid filters are turning out to be a high growth market, with the latest advancements in the filtration field. Nowadays, most companies are opting for filters that have material blended with some kind of polymer.
Many countries have brought about changes in their policies to adopt stricter regulations regarding wastewater. This has caused companies to use advanced filtration technology, further increasing the demand for liquid filters. As per the United Nations World Water Assessment Program, in 2017, almost 80% of sewage was discharged without treatment. In regard to this, India has applied Zero Liquid Discharge rules in several jurisdictions and is expected to continue stringent regulations. The U.S. Government, in October 2020, also passed a Presidential order to facilitate effective and efficient water management and modernize water treatment plants in the country.
The significance of water treatment has increased in the past few years due to declining freshwater resources, aging existing water treatment infrastructure, and an increase in stringent regulations in areas of water reuse and wastage. Additionally, as the population increases, domestic use of water is expected to increase, along with agriculture and industrial use.
Seawater desalination plants, especially in the Middle East, are expected to show promising signs in the water treatment industry. Japanese companies, according to the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry, Japan, are expected to have an advantage in terms of technology. Canada is one more candidate for promising growth in the water treatment industry. Ontario has developed a plan that recognizes water bodies as central to economic wellbeing. Companies such as EMAGIN Clean Technologies Inc., Lystek International, and Mantech have been developing Ontario’s water treatment ecosystem.
The post-COVID-19 scenario for the pharmaceutical industry is expected to be of strong growth. Pharmaceutical companies will look to manufacture locally, creating a robust and resilient supply chain. India looks to gain massively from this step. It is expected that the pharmaceutical industry in India is projected to grow at 5% till 2040. The ICRA Indian Credit Rating Agency has changed the outlook of pharma from ‘negative’ to ‘stable.’
The food and beverage segment is on its way to record the fastest growth in the liquid filters market. Rising demand for ready-to-eat and convenience food is the prime factors driving the market growth. As per the Indian Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF), the Indian FMCG market is expected to grow at 14% CAGR and is expected to reach USD 220 billion by 2025. Similar trends are expected in emerging countries of South Africa, Australia, and Brazil.
Due to ever-increasing food demand, companies are trying to expand their operations by penetrating into new markets or modernizing their existing plants. They have also turned their attention to mergers and acquisitions. For instance, Brandt, in July 2020, announced the acquisition of a specialty formulations plant to increase its capacity by four times. Pepsico announced plans to expand its Gatorade plant expansion in Florida, investing USD 30 million.
The EU, in the coming years, is looking to undertake several programs regarding water treatment that can create avenues for the liquid filter market growth. EU is planning to develop a circular economy in wastewater. Poland invested around USD 8.39 million in 2019 to upgrade its technology and capacity. Under the EU LIFE program, the Netherlands developed a regional sludge processing hub, with investments of around USD 11.75 million. The European Union countries are expected to show similar trends that can benefit the liquid filters market.