Minerals as Additives and Functional Ingredients

Published - Jul 2001| Analyst - Mary Roth| Code - AVM032A
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Report Highlights


  • The total annual consumption of the minerals studied is estimated to be nearly 181 million metric tons in the U.S. in 2000.
  • The market is expected to rise at an average annual growth rate (AAGR) of 1.6% to reach 195 million metric tons by 2005.
  • About 69% of current consumption is used as additive minerals or functional ingredients. This amount will increase at an AAGR of 1.7%, crossing 136 million metric tons by 2005.



The use of minerals as additives is widespread in today's industrial market. Historically, mineral fillers were used to extend other raw materials as a cost-savings measure. Today, specific materials are developed and selected for the functional and aesthetic properties they impart to the finished product. In other cases, particular minerals act as agents to speed or facilitate manufacturing of other goods.

The markets in which minerals are used and the reasons for their use are changing and expanding all the time. This report discusses recent developments in the application of mineral additives in various industrial products. An analysis of the current mineral additive industry is included, as well as current and forecast sales figures for selected minerals, market applications, and functions. The state of the current global market, world growth trends, and global resources of minerals are considered as well.


This report discusses the current state of the minerals additive market as well as recent developments in this area. The objectives of the study are to inform and update the reader about the domestic and global minerals markets, the minerals themselves, and their suppliers. Basic properties of minerals, what markets they are used in, and the reasons for their use are discussed. In addition, the reader will gain an understanding of the market trends of mineral additives, the influencing factors for those trends, and the state of the global market. Suppliers and their activity within the minerals market are presented as well. The reader will also have insight into recent technological advances in the world of mineral processing and applications.


The intended audiences are mineral suppliers, industrial consumers of minerals, those who use finished products containing minerals to fabricate other goods, and those concerned with the trends in this market, such as investors and students.


This study is limited to the discussion of the use of minerals as additives; that is, applications where the mineral is found in the finished product. Applications in which minerals are used as manufacturing or processing aids, such as drilling muds, filter aids, foundry, metallurgy, refractory, water treatment, or any other similar uses, are mentioned but not discussed at length.

A total of 44 minerals have been selected for analysis. For the purpose of this study, a mineral is defined as an element or combination of elements that form a solid, is naturally occurring, inorganic, and has a specific spatial order and chemistry. The use of calcined minerals are discussed with their uncalcined counterparts, even though they are not crystalline in structure and therefore do not meet the strict definition of minerals. The basic properties of the chosen minerals are discussed in the context of how they affect the products in which they are used.

Organization of Report

The report is organized as follows: the Summary and Overview sections provide a synopsis of the report and an introduction into the minerals industry.

The minerals themselves are presented in detail in the Minerals section. Basic information is presented, such as properties, sources, global production, domestic production and consumption, reserves, and competitive products.

The Markets section includes two methods of categorization. First, the 13 markets in which minerals are most commonly used are detailed. Forecasts for the growth of each mineral in each market are given, and the section provides an overall view of the segments and their relative position in the additive minerals market.

Then, an analysis of additive mineral use by function follows. Five functional applications are studied in particular. The functional applications represent the basic reasons why additive minerals are used in the 13 market segments discussed above. Any one mineral could be used in several different markets, serving only one function, such as acting as a flame retardant, or more than one function, such as coating and filling. The growth trends of the use of additive minerals in each function are also included.

The Technology section presents the recent developments in both processing of minerals and new applications for minerals.

Next is the Global and Domestic Mineral Markets section, which defines the world and U.S. mineral industries in terms of production and growth trends. Also, the consumption and import/export situation of the domestic market are studied in depth.

The section on the Minerals Industry discusses the recent activities within the minerals markets for major suppliers.

Finally, data on major mineral suppliers is presented in the Company Profiles section.

Additional information is included in the Appendix.


Information for this report was gathered from various sources. Telephone interviews with mineral suppliers were conducted to confirm market data and gain an understanding of new applications and advances in the field of mineral use. Information was also gathered from published works of private individuals as well as the U.S. Government. Some data was collected from the Internet web sites of suppliers, users, industry trade organizations, supplier organizations, and industry experts.

Initially, government data was used to provide a basis from which to start for production and consumption data, as well as import and export data. Then, various other sources were used to adjust and compute growth trends for minerals and individual mineral use in particular applications.

All mineral volume data is presented in metric tons.


Mary Campbell Roth worked in a technical capacity for a major mineral supplier from 1988 to 1995. Her responsibilities as a technical service engineer included providing field service to mineral users throughout North America and Scandinavia. Roth's detailed product knowledge includes kaolin, ground and precipitated calcium carbonate, fuller's earth, talc, and titanium dioxide. The author is familiar with several of the industries covered within this report, but is particularly knowledgeable about the paper industry.

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