Wood activated carbon is an acid washed activated carbon, manufactured by steam activation from coconut shells. It is high purity and high activity variant of activated carbon. Owing to its fine structure blocked by residues, it cannot be used as very active adsorption material. The material comes in two forms such as granular and powder. The wood activated carbon market is segmented on the basis of form factor, application, end user, and region.
On the basis of form factor, the wood activated carbon market has been segmented into granular and powder. Granular form factor offers unique properties such as low moisture content, high hardness percentage, high pH range, and others. Owing to these benefits, application of the granular form is growing across users. For example, these products are effective in eliminating unwanted odors and color precursors from the sample. On the other hand, powder form factor is gaining popularity owing to its fine structure suitable for filtration applications.
On the basis of application, the wood activated carbon market has been segmented into impurities removal, gas adsorption, decolorization, and others. The offers significantly high separation capability. Owing to this capability, it has been widely used to remove lead-based impurities, particulate matter, other impurities from liquid and gaseous medium. In processing industries such as chemicals and metal mining, huge amount of impurities is generated from daily production activity. In order to filter these impurities, demand for wood activated version of carbon is growing in these industries.
On the basis of end user, the wood activated carbon market has been segmented into food and beverage, environment, energy, chemical, and pharmaceutical. In food and beverage industry, the material is used as decolorizing agent for sugar, glucose, amino acid, gelatin, syrup, and others. While in environment and chemicals sector, it has been used as gas adsorption and impurity removing agent. Owing to strong penetration of the material in gas adsorption, impurities removal, and decolorization application, chemical and food and beverage are identified as most prominent end user for the wood activated carbon market. In coming years, growing government regulations regarding environment emission and purity of food products are expected to further increase the penetration of wood activated carbon in chemical and food and beverages industry.
The major growth drivers identified in the wood activated carbon market are stringent environment regulations for removing metallic contamination from industrial fields and growing demand for water purification in industrial and municipal sector. In order to meet the government regulations, operators in power plants and chemical product plants are opting for wood activated version of the carbon for removing metallic contamination from its emissions. This in turn driving the demand side growth of the market.
Rapid fluctuation of raw material prices is identified as major restraint against the growth of the wood activated carbon market. For example, spot price fluctuation of wood pellets in commodity market creates pressure on producers to decrease the production cost for wood activated carbon. In order to adjust the increased production cost, producers may need to increase price for wood activated version of the carbon. This has negatively affected the demand for these materials among customers.
Potential application of activated carbon derived from wood in manufacturing sector such as automotive and electronics industries may create growth opportunity for the wood activated carbon market in coming years. In automotive applications, components made of activated carbon derived from wood offers multiple benefits. For example, while used in automotive canister manufacturing, these materials offer benefits such as improvement of gasoline working capacity, decrease in diurnal emissions, and reduction in weight of the product. Considering these benefits, application of activated carbon derived from wood is expected to increase in automotive sector. This in turn will create growth opportunity for the market.
Insights by geography
Based on geography, the global wood activated carbon market has been segmented into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Africa, and Latin America. Asia-Pacific is identified as most dominant region from both demand side as well as supply side perspective. The Asia-Pacific market is growing owing to factors including rapid industrialization in major countries, strong demand for food and beverages items among consumers, and rising demand for impurity removal in chemical industry. China was the largest contributor in the Asia-Pacific wood activated carbon market in 2017.
Some of the major players operating in the global wood activated carbon market are Calgon Carbon Corporation, Cabot Corporation, Ingevity, Carbo Tech AC GmbH, Donau Chemie AG, Fujian Zhixing activated carbon Co., Ltd, Kuraray Chemical Co., Ltd., Osaka Gas Chemicals Co. Ltd., Oxbow Activated Carbon, and Zhejiang Xingda Activated Carbon Co., Ltd.