The chemical compounds derived from an acid, which contains at least an alkyl group (–O) replacing the hydroxyl group (–OH) are known as esters. Glycerol esters are one of the prominent classes of lipids. Glycerol esters, also known as glycerides, or acylglycerols have three hydroxyl groups. These functional hydroxyl groups can be esterified with either one, two, or three fatty acid groups in order to form monoglycerides, diglycerides, and triglycerides respectively. Glycerol esters of fatty acids are esters of fatty acids and glycerol and their derivatives. These are, usually, colourless to brown powders, waxy solids or liquids and are composed of fatty acid chains which offer a lipophilic part and ester functional group which yields a hydrophilic end. Some of the glycerol esters of fatty acids include glycerol acetic acid fatty acid ester, glycerol lactic acid fatty acid ester and glycerol succinic acid fatty acid ester, among the others.
Triglycerides are mostly present in animal fats and vegetable oils that can be broken down by lipases into its mono and diglycerides form. Reaction between the glycerides and sodium hydroxide results in the formation of soaps which contain fatty acids that emulsify the oils in dirt in turn enable the removal of dirt. Glycerol esters commonly find application as surfactants which act as emulsifiers, especially in personal care and cosmetics industry.
Esters are added as substitutes for petroleum products in cosmetics products. Growing demand for glycerol esters as effective alternatives to conventional petroleum based products from cosmetics & personal care industry is expected to be one of the key factors that fuelling the growth of global glycerol esters market. Furthermore, increasing demand for glycerol esters from lubricant industry which in turn is related to growing automotive industry is expected to set positive outlook for the global glycerol esters market over the forecast period. With the growing consumption of glycerol esters in antifogging agents as well as textile chemicals are the other factors driving the growth of global glycerol esters market. However, relatively more complex production process coupled with corresponding relatively higher production cost is expected to be one of the major restraining factors for the growth of global glycerol esters market over the forecast period.
Global glycerol esters market can be segmented based on end-use industry and region. On the basis of end-use industry, global glycerol esters market can be segmented as cosmetic & personal care, lubricant & greases, metal working, plastics & polymers, textile, and other miscellaneous industries. On the basis of region, global glycerol esters market can be segmented as North America, Latin America, Middle East & Africa, Asia Pacific, Western Europe, and Eastern Europe.
Asia pacific is expected to be the dominant market due to large population opting for the cosmetic and personnel care products and anticipated to show a significant growth over the forecast period. North America and Western Europe are considered to be the developed markets. Together, these two regions account for a major share in global glycerol esters market. However, growth in consumption of glycerol esters in these regions is expected to be relatively slower vis-à-vis Asia Pacific. Also, Middle East & Africa and Latin America, accounting for a relatively smaller share in overall global glycerol esters market, are expected to register steady growth in glycerol esters consumption over the forecast period.
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Global glycerol esters market is highly fragmented with a large number of small scale participants in developing countries. Examples of some of the market participants in the global glycerol esters market include Oleon NV, Stepan Company, BASF SE, Croda International Plc., ABITEC, A&A Fratelli Parodi Spa, and Zhejiang Wumei Chemical Product Co., Ltd., among the others