Aldehydes are defined as the organic compounds containing a formyl group. The properties and characteristics of aldehydes, however, vary according to the remainder of the molecule apart from just the formyl group. Some of the main types of aldehydes are formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, butyraldehyde, benzaldehyde, propionaldehyde, tolualdehyde, furfural and others. Each of these aldehydes has different applications and is produced in different quantities according to their utilization for various applications in various regions. Aldehydes are extensively used in medical, industrial, food and a host of other applications. Industrially, aldehydes are extensively used as precursor to various other chemicals such as acids, alcohols, resins etc.
Drivers and Restraints
Among the different kinds of aldehydes, formaldehyde is the one of the most common types and is placed amongst the largest consumed aldehydes globally. The formaldehyde market is driven by its use in the manufacture of different kinds of resins such as urea formaldehyde resins, melamine formaldehyde resins and phenol formaldehyde resins. Apart from this, formaldehyde demand is also driven by its use for other downstream chemicals such as 1,4-butanediol and others.
Formaldehyde is also used in medical application as a disinfectant owing to its superior ability to kill bacteria and other microbes. Benzaldehyde is another widely used variety of the aldehyde family, which is used mainly as a precursor in production of many chemicals such as plastic additives, pharmaceuticals, acrydine dyes, styrene and others. Butyraldehyde is another major chemical in the aldehyde family which has tremendous industrial applications. Butyraldehyde is used to produce downstream chemicals such as n-butanol, 2-ethylhexanol and polyvinyl butyral which are used in a host of end use industries. N-butanol is by far the most produced downstream chemical accounting for over 60% of the consumption of butyraldehyde. Acetaldehyde is another important chemical in the aldehyde family. Similar to the other aldehydes, acetaldehyde is also used mainly as a precursor compound. The main application of acetaldehyde is as a parent chemical for the production of acetic acid, which, again is an important basic chemical having a lot of end user applications. Also, acetaldehyde is widely used as a plasticizer in the plastics industry and as a paint binder in the paints and coatings industry.
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Although the chemicals under the aldehyde family are indispensable in a lot of end use industries, the primary restraint of the market is the environmentally hazardous status of a number of aldehyde compounds. Some aldehydes are immensely toxic to human beings as well as the environment, owing to which green alternatives are being developed. Green aldehyde compounds naturally have an opportunity to gradually replace some of the existing application domains of traditional aldehydes.
The aldehydes market is segmented on the basis of product type and regions. On product type basis, the aldehydes market is segmented into the following products:
- Others (Cinnamaldehyde, Vanillin, dialdehydes)
On the basis of regions, global aldehydes market is segmented into seven main regions, which are North America, Latin America, Middle East & Africa, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Asia Pacific excluding Japan (APEJ) and Japan. Owing to the huge growth of manufacturing industry in the region, APEJ accounts for approximately half of the global consumption. Europe is the second largest consumer of aldehyde compounds followed by North America.
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Some of the major players studied in this documentation of global aldehyde market are Celanese Corporation, Huntsman Corporation, BASF SE, Georgia Pacific Corporation and Dynea Oy and others.