Defoamers play a crucial role in various industries, preventing and controlling foam formation during manufacturing processes. Over recent years, there has been a notable shift towards the use of eco-friendly defoamers, predominantly driven by environmental consciousness and regulatory pressures. These sustainable alternatives, often based on renewable resources and free from harmful chemicals, are gaining traction worldwide. According to Inkwood Research, the global defoamers market is forecasted to rise with a CAGR of 7.56% during the projection period, 2024-2032. Moreover, the market is expected to reach $5103.65 million by 2032.
Industries such as food and beverage, pharmaceuticals, and wastewater treatment, are increasingly recognizing the importance of balancing effective foam control with environmentally responsible practices. As a result, this leads to a growing demand for eco-friendly defoamers that align with both performance and sustainability goals.
Defoamers Market: Exploring Sustainable Alternatives
While some defoamers are formulated to be environmentally friendly, others may contain components that can pose risks if not managed properly. Silicone-based defoamers, for example, can persist in the environment and may contribute to water pollution if not disposed of responsibly. Moreover, studies also indicate that improperly managed defoamer waste containing silicone compounds has been identified as a potential source of water contamination in certain industrial settings.
- BYK (Germany), a leading global supplier of speciality chemicals, offers BYK-1740, a ‘green’ defoamer based on environmentally friendly as well as sustainable raw materials. Particularly utilized for aqueous architectural coatings and adhesives, it possesses an excellent defoaming effect. Besides, it is also VOC-free and biodegradable.
- Similarly, Nouryon (Amsterdam), formerly AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals, introduced Ethylan TB345, a water-miscible defoamer designed to address the increasing demand for environmentally friendly and cost-effective solutions in household and industrial cleaning formulations. This water-based solution aligns with the growing emphasis on eco-safe products, while ensuring optimal performance, meeting the evolving needs of customers seeking both efficiency and environmental responsibility.
Accordingly, water-based defoamers are emerging as a highly effective, efficient, and environmentally friendly solution for managing foam formation and accumulation. Owing to this, workers across processing industries widely rely on them to address diverse foam control requirements.
As per Inkwood Research, the water-based defoamers segment is anticipated to lead the product category, between 2024-2032. These variations are also considered biodegradable, thus making them suitable for environmentally sensitive applications and aligning with sustainable practices. Various water-based defoamers are also crafted without harmful components, exhibiting minimal environmental impact.
Water-based defoamers present several advantages when compared to other product types. These include –
- Cost Efficiency – With water being the most cost-effective ingredient, water-based defoamers offer a budget-friendly option. Moreover, their production can leverage byproducts from other manufacturing applications, enhancing cost-effectiveness.
- Ease of Application – Water-based defoamers often require minimal equipment for dilution to lower concentrations, simplifying the application process and making them user-friendly.
- Enhanced Performance – These defoamers readily disperse in water and water-based solutions, ensuring effective foam suppression and deaeration. Importantly, they avoid contributing to deposition issues that may impact equipment functionality, product integrity, or overall quality.
- Versatile Compatibility – Suitable for various industries and operations, from paper processing to industrial process water and wastewater treatment, water-based defoamers exhibit defoaming action across a broad range of temperatures (typically up to 160°F) and pH levels.
Asia-Pacific: A Promising Landscape for Sustainable Defoamers
China is emerging as a promising space for sustainable solutions within the Asia-Pacific defoamers market. With a substantial share expected to reach xx% by 2032, the demand is notably driven by the eco-conscious paint and coatings industry. The synergy between China’s vision of high-quality development and the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF) for the People’s Republic of China 2021-2025 is further positioning the nation as a key player in the sustainable defoamers industry.
Japan, boasting one of the world’s most influential paper industries, is witnessing a surge in manufacturing activities. This industrial growth has propelled an increased demand for paper within the country and, concurrently, a rise in the need for sustainable defoamers. Defoamers are extensively applied in paper and pulp mills to combat issues related to surface foam and the presence of entrapped air, making them a crucial component in the production process. As a result, the rising sales of paper and paperboard across Japanese provinces are expected to drive growth in the Japan defoamers market.
- Market Position: Inkwood Research anticipates that the defoamers market in Japan is set to grow with a CAGR of 4.91% during the forecast period, 2024-2032.
In India, the agricultural sector’s heavy reliance on agrochemicals makes it a pivotal player in the green defoamers sector. The nation’s commitment to sustainable practices is mirrored in the significant role that eco-friendly defoamers play in driving growth. As India continues to prioritize environmentally conscious approaches, the market for sustainable defoamers is expected to witness significant expansion over the upcoming years.
In industrial processes, defoamers serve to control and eliminate foam formation during various industrial processes, preventing issues such as equipment malfunction and product quality degradation.
Defoamers can be formulated with various active ingredients, such as silicone-based compounds, mineral oils, fatty alcohols, and hydrophobic silica.