Flame Retardant Chemicals

Published - Jul 2003| Analyst - Marcanne Green| Code - CHM014I
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Report Highlights

  • Flame-retardant chemical sales worldwide should grow at an average annual rate of 5.5% reaching $2.95 billion by 2008.
  • Greatest growth will be in melamine, and bromine- and phosphorus-based FR, posting AAGRs of 6.6% to 6.7%
  • Bromine represents more than one-third of the market, and will maintain this share through the forecast period.
  • Melamine should have increased presence in Northern Europe.
  • Alumina trihydrate will dominate with an estimated 44% market share of volume.


Fires worldwide kill up to 4 in 1,000 people each year, and cause considerable property damage. The most common cause of death in fires is the release of gas and smoke, and the best method for preventing such release is to delay the ignition of materials in the presence of fire. The use of flame retardants hinders or delays the combustion process. Because of this, government regulations and industry standards obligate manufacturers to add flame retardants to a wide range of everyday products. They are used in plastics, textiles, wood, paper and coatings, and can be found in walls and ceilings, furniture, floor coverings, fabrics, electronics and many other products. As a result, the flame retardants industry has saved many lives and millions of dollars in property losses.

Many flame-retardant products, however, are toxic and have been directly linked to health problems. To protect consumers and the environment, regulations are in place limiting the use of specific flame retardants for particular applications. The benefits of protecting people from death, and property from damage resulting from fires, must be weighed against exposure to chemicals that are potentially harmful to human health and the environment. The impact these regulations have on the industry are multidimensional, and this study discusses the flame-retardant chemicals market resulting from this balancing act between fire-retardant requirements and environmental regulations.

Also driving the flame-retardants industry is the fact that until flame retardants are developed that completely block the combustion of materials, the industry will continue to have room for improvement. Therefore, new technologies are being introduced into this market, and although these products cannot always replace the more harmful chemicals, they are expected to gain market share over the next five years.

In this study, BCC presents a detailed overview of the worldwide market size, growth and trends for this industry through 2008. The chemicals are evaluated by process application and chemical type. The current flame-retardant chemicals market is assessed and compared to historical market performance. Projected sales for the industry as a whole are forecasted by application and type.


This study provides coverage of:

  • Worldwide market size, growth and trends in detail
  • Global markets for FR chemicals with forecast trends and sales through 2008
  • Major chemicals, applications and industries using these products
  • Regulations driving this market and their global impact
  • Estimates of market share by product application and chemical types
  • Industry structure, including major suppliers.


BCC evaluates each flame retardant chemical application and type. To make projections for the future of the flame retardant chemicals market, a correlation between products using flame retardant chemicals and the annual sales of flame retardant chemicals was developed. Interviews were conducted with raw material suppliers, flame retardant chemical companies and end user company representatives to compile a full picture of the future of the flame retardant chemicals marketplace.

Company annual reports were assessed and sales values were confirmed with reliable sources. Company market shares were also confirmed and cross-referenced.


Hundreds of information sources contributed to this study including interviews with industry experts, research databases, technical abstracts, commerce publications, government sources, financial and trade information, library resources and the internet.


Marcanne Green is a degreed Chemical Engineer with a BS from the University of Washington in Seattle, WA and over 12 years experience. Ms. Green has worked in the power, nuclear, water treatment, electroplating, surface finishing, aerospace, food and environmental engineering industries. She has done work for Boeing, the U.S. Department of Energy, Hill Brothers Chemical Co., Calgon Corp. and Ondeo Nalco.

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