Plastics Additives in Europe

Published - Jan 2002| Analyst - Ashish Tamhankar| Code - PLS019C
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Report Highlights

  • In 2001, a total of 2.3 million metric tons of plastics additives were used in Europe, approximately 25% of the global volume of 8.4 million tons.
  • European consumption is expected to grow at an average annual rate (AAGR) of 3.1% to 2.7 million tons by 2006.
  • Plasticizers dominate the market, representing some 56% of the market, but will grow more slowly than other segments, at an AAGR of 2.8%.
  • Despite environmental concerns, flame retardants, the second largest market segment, will continue to grow more quickly than the overall market.
  • The small market for light stabilizers will feature the fastest overall growth, while heat stabilizers will see the least growth through the 2006 time frame.



Additives for plastics often are the ignored components of plastics materials. When discussing the market's success and the progress of a variety of plastics materials, only the plastics as used by the processors and converters are mentioned. But no real credit is given to the dynamic chemical additives, which are an integral part of the plastic composition. It is these additives that make plastics materials as useful and versatile as they are.

In practice, these additives form an essential part of most plastics formulations. They ensure the efficient processing of the materials and enhance the key performance properties in order to achieve the desired application and long term use.

The main objectives of this report are to report_highlights the key market segments within the European plastics industry and to analyze the technological and marketing aspects of the plastics additives used in Western Europe.


The reason for this report is to review the developments and trends in this important industry sector as an effective source of information for the manufacturers and users of plastics additives.

The development and applications of plastics additives are governed by the developments in the plastics material manufacturing industry and some other important factors such as, legislation, environmental issues, customer and market pressures and of course achieving the right balance between the cost and performance.

The shape of the plastics additive industry is constantly changing in response to the above factors and thus is an important growth area. In fact, growth in this area tracks the growth of the plastics manufacturing industry as a whole.


The report is an ideal and up-to-date guide on the European plastics additives market and attempts to answer the questions for all:


  • Management in the raw material supply sector
  • Management in compounding sector
  • Consulting engineers, technical experts and specifiers in the plastics sector
  • Financial advisors, consultants and strategists
  • Mergers and acquisition specialists exploring European expansion possibilities.



This report examines the technological and commercial aspects of the developments in the European plastics additives market.

The main types of plastics additives for which the statistical information is provided include:

  • antioxidants
  • antistatic agents
  • heat stabilizers
  • light stabilizers
  • lubricants and processing aids
  • flame retardants
  • plasticizers
  • impact modifiers
  • other specialist additives (antimicrobials, blowing agents, nucleating agents, etc.)

The European countries covered in this report include:

  • The United Kingdom
  • Germany
  • France
  • Italy
  • Benelux countries
  • Scandinavian countries
  • Other Western European countries.

The statistical data provided are estimates and forecasts through to the year 2006. The volume data are shown in metric tonnes and sales figures are in constant U.S. dollars.

This report looks at the changes in the marketplace and provides forecasts for growth of the various types of plastics additives. It discusses the supply and demand situations and predicts the developments over the next 5 years. It gives a comprehensive overview of additive manufacturers in Europe and end users, including plastics raw material manufacturers and the compounders.

The report starts with an executive summary and is followed by a discussion of the different individual additive types, their applications and volume growths. Only relevant references are made to the individual plastics materials, where appropriate, rather than going into too many details of the plastics raw material manufacturing sector. The markets for each individual additive are analyzed both overall and per country. The new technological advances have been described in detail, as is the information on the latest mergers and acquisitions. Finally, profiles of leading companies in the industry are given.

Fillers and colorants, which sometimes are classed as additives, are not discussed in this report. These specialist materials are a topic of vast importance in their own rights and therefore need separate analytical reporting. They will form topics of future separate BCC reports.


The data provided in this report is based on a substantial research covering various aspects of the plastics additives industry. A variety of technical and trade magazines have been used as data sources. The data published by various government and trade associations/sources has also been referenced.

In-depth analysis has been carried out by telephone discussions and face to face interviews, where possible, with major manufacturers of additives, distributors, suppliers and the end users including the compounding companies.

The World Wide Web and Internet technology have been used extensively to obtain information on major players involved in the industry. Their official and published financial information has been analyzed to ascertain their market share, volumes, and sales revenues in the plastics additives markets. The latest product information brochures from such major companies have also been referred to where available. E-mail communications including "feedback" options have been used to gather and verify the data.

The information from all of the above sources was assembled and a thorough analysis and assessment was carried out to forecast future trends and developments.

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