The Global Market for Natural Fibers 2022-2032

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June 2022 | 315 pages, 107 figures, 57 tables | Download Table of contents

Continued growth in composites and packaging markets is creating opportunities for biobased, renewable materials. Fibers derived from bio-based sources such as plant-based (ligno) cellulosics and animal-based protein are termed natural fibers (NF). This includes natural cellulosic fibers such as cotton, jute, sisal, coir, flax, hemp, abaca, ramie, etc.) and protein-based fibers such as wool and silk. Man-made cellulose fibers (e.g., viscose rayon, cellulose acetate and nanocellulose) that are produced with chemical procedures from pulped wood or other sources (cotton, bamboo, biomass) are also covered in this report under the natural fibers definition.

Natural fibers, with their porous cell structure and relatively low density, are becoming increasingly popular because they are renewable, non-abrasive, cheap, available in abundance and pose lower health risks during handling and processing.

They possess environmental advantages including decreased respiratory and dermal irritation, improved energy consumption, less wear and abrasion on tools, and minimal health hazards.  Natural fiber composites (NFCs) have been developed for use in automotive, marine, sports gear, construction, and aerospace markets. 

The use of natural fibers is growing as environmentally friendly replacement materials for packaging applications. In June 2022, Carlsberg launched a trial of recyclable fibre beer bottles composed of a wood-based fibre shell and a plant-based polyethylene furanoate (PEF) polymer lining. Absolut Company has partnered with a new start-up to develop a natural-fiber based closure cap for spirit bottles.  BMW is utilizing natural fibers from BComp in the BMW M4 GT4 racing car. 

Report contents include: 

  • Market drivers for natural fibers.
  • Market trends.
  • Global revenues for natural fibers 2022-2032, by fiber types, market and region.
  • Technology challenges.
  • Analysis of types of natural fibers including plant-derived fibers, cultivated animal fibers cell fibers, microbe-derived fibers. 
  • Markets for natural fibers, including composites, aerospace, automotive, construction & building, sports & leisure, textiles, consumer products and packaging.
  • Profiles of 190 natural fiber companies. Companies profiled include Algaeing, Ananas Anam, BASF, Bast Fiber Technologies Inc., Blue Ocean Closures, Coastgrass ApS, Kelheim Fibres GmbH, BComp, Circular Systems, Evrnu, Natural Fiber Welding, Icytos and many more. 

 

 

1              EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   20

  • 1.1          What are natural fibers?               20
  • 1.2          Benefits of natural fibers over synthetic 24
  • 1.3          Markets and applications for natural fibers           24
  • 1.4          Recent commercial activity in natural fibers         26
  • 1.5          Market drivers for natural fibers                30
  • 1.6          Challenges          32

 

2              NATURAL FIBER TYPES    33

  • 2.1          Manufacturing method, matrix materials and applications of natural fibers            34
  • 2.2          Advantages of natural fibers       36
  • 2.3          Plants (cellulose, lignocellulose) 37
    • 2.3.1      Seed fibers         37
      • 2.3.1.1   Cotton  37
      • 2.3.1.2   Kapok   38
      • 2.3.1.3   Luffa      39
    • 2.3.2      Bast fibers           41
      • 2.3.2.1   Jute       41
      • 2.3.2.2   Hemp    43
      • 2.3.2.3   Flax        44
      • 2.3.2.4   Ramie   46
      • 2.3.2.5   Kenaf    47
    • 2.3.3      Leaf fibers           49
      • 2.3.3.1   Sisal       49
      • 2.3.3.2   Abaca    50
    • 2.3.4      Fruit fibers          52
      • 2.3.4.1   Coir        52
      • 2.3.4.2   Banana 53
      • 2.3.4.3   Pineapple            55
    • 2.3.5      Stalk fibers from agricultural residues     57
      • 2.3.5.1   Rice fiber             57
      • 2.3.5.2   Corn      57
    • 2.3.6      Cane, grasses and reed  58
      • 2.3.6.1   Switch grass       58
      • 2.3.6.2   Sugarcane (agricultural residues)              59
      • 2.3.6.3   Bamboo               60
      • 2.3.6.4   Fresh grass (green biorefinery)  61
    • 2.3.7      Modified natural polymers          61
      • 2.3.7.1   Mycelium            61
      • 2.3.7.2   Chitosan              64
      • 2.3.7.3   Alginate               64
  • 2.4          Animal (fibrous protein) 66
    • 2.4.1      Wool     66
      • 2.4.1.1   Plant-derived wool          67
      • 2.4.1.2   Microbe-derived wool   68
      • 2.4.1.3   Cultivated animal cell wool          68
      • 2.4.1.4   Producers           69
    • 2.4.2      Silk fiber              69
      • 2.4.2.1   Plant-derived silk             70
      • 2.4.2.2   Microbe-derived silk       71
      • 2.4.2.3   Producers           71
    • 2.4.3      Leather 73
      • 2.4.3.1   Plant-derived leather     73
      • 2.4.3.2   Mycelium leather             73
      • 2.4.3.3   Microbe-derived leather              74
      • 2.4.3.4   Cultivated animal cell leather      75
      • 2.4.3.5   Producers           76
    • 2.4.4      Fur         78
      • 2.4.4.1   Plant-derived fur              78
      • 2.4.4.2   Cultivated animal cell fur              78
      • 2.4.4.3   Producers           79
    • 2.4.5      Down    80
      • 2.4.5.1   Plant-derived down        81
      • 2.4.5.2   Microbe-derived down 81
      • 2.4.5.3   Producers           83
  • 2.5          Polysaccharides 84
    • 2.5.1      Microfibrillated cellulose (MFC) 84
      • 2.5.1.1   Market analysis 84
      • 2.5.1.2   Producers           85
    • 2.5.2      Cellulose nanocrystals    85
      • 2.5.2.1   Market analysis 85
      • 2.5.2.2   Producers           86
    • 2.5.3      Cellulose nanofibers       87
      • 2.5.3.1   Market analysis 87
      • 2.5.3.2   Producers           89

 

3              MARKETS FOR NATURAL FIBERS 90

  • 3.1          Composites        90
    • 3.1.1      Applications       90
    • 3.1.2      Natural fiber injection moulding compounds       92
      • 3.1.2.1   Properties           92
      • 3.1.2.2   Applications       93
    • 3.1.3      Non-woven natural fiber mat composites              93
      • 3.1.3.1   Automotive        93
      • 3.1.3.2   Applications       94
    • 3.1.4      Aligned natural fiber-reinforced composites        94
    • 3.1.5      Natural fiber biobased polymer compounds         95
    • 3.1.6      Natural fiber biobased polymer non-woven mats              95
      • 3.1.6.1   Flax        95
      • 3.1.6.2   Kenaf    96
    • 3.1.7      Natural fiber thermoset bioresin composites       96
  • 3.2          Aerospace          97
    • 3.2.1      Market overview             97
  • 3.3          Automotive        98
    • 3.3.1      Market overview             98
    • 3.3.2      Applications of natural fibers      102
  • 3.4          Building/construction     103
    • 3.4.1      Market overview             103
    • 3.4.2      Applications of natural fibers      103
  • 3.5          Sports and leisure            105
    • 3.5.1      Market overview             105
  • 3.6          Textiles 106
    • 3.6.1      Market overview             106
    • 3.6.2      Consumer apparel           108
    • 3.6.3      Geotextiles        108
  • 3.7          Packaging            110
    • 3.7.1      Market overview             110

 

4              GLOBAL NATURAL FIBERS MARKET           112

  • 4.1          Overall global fibers market        112
  • 4.2          Plant-based fiber production      114
  • 4.3          Animal-based natural fiber production   115

 

5              NATURAL FIBER PRODUCERS AND PRODUCT DEVELOPER PROFILES            116 (190 company profiles)

 

6              AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY     311

 

7              RESEARCH METHODOLOGY         312

 

8              REFERENCES       312

 

TABLES

  • Table 1. Types of natural fibers. 21
  • Table 2. Markets and applications for natural fibers.         24
  • Table 3. Investments in natural fiber companies 2020-2022.           29
  • Table 4. Market drivers for natural fibers.             30
  • Table 5. Application, manufacturing method, and matrix materials of natural fibers.          34
  • Table 6. Typical properties of natural fibers.         36
  • Table 7. Overview of cotton fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.   37
  • Table 8. Overview of kapok fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.    38
  • Table 9. Overview of luffa fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.       39
  • Table 10. Overview of jute fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.     41
  • Table 11. Overview of hemp fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.  43
  • Table 12. Overview of flax fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.      44
  • Table 13. Overview of ramie fibers- description, properties, drawbacks and applications. 46
  • Table 14. Overview of kenaf fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.  47
  • Table 15. Overview of sisal fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.     49
  • Table 16. Overview of abaca fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.  50
  • Table 17. Overview of coir fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.      52
  • Table 18. Overview of banana fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.               53
  • Table 19. Overview of pineapple fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.         55
  • Table 20. Overview of rice fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.      57
  • Table 21. Overview of corn fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.    57
  • Table 22. Overview of switch grass fibers-description, properties and applications.             58
  • Table 23. Overview of sugarcane fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and application and market size.           59
  • Table 24. Overview of bamboo fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.             60
  • Table 25. Overview of mycelium fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.          63
  • Table 26. Overview of chitosan fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.            64
  • Table 27. Overview of alginate-description, properties, application and market size.          64
  • Table 28. Overview of wool fibers-description, properties, drawbacks and applications.   66
  • Table 29. Alternative wool materials producers. 69
  • Table 30. Overview of silk fibers-description, properties, application and market size.       69
  • Table 31. Alternative silk materials producers.    71
  • Table 32. Alternative leather materials producers.            76
  • Table 33. Alternative fur materials producers.     79
  • Table 34. Alternative down materials producers. 83
  • Table 35. Microfibrillated cellulose (MFC) market analysis.            84
  • Table 36. Leading MFC producers and capacities.               85
  • Table 37. Cellulose nanocrystals analysis.               85
  • Table 38. Cellulose nanocrystal production capacities and production process, by producer.          86
  • Table 39. Cellulose nanofibers market analysis.   87
  • Table 40. CNF production capacities and production process, by producer, in metric tons.               89
  • Table 41. Applications of natural fiber composites.           90
  • Table 42. Typical properties of short natural fiber-thermoplastic composites.       92
  • Table 43. Properties of non-woven natural fiber mat composites.               94
  • Table 44. Properties of aligned natural fiber composites. 94
  • Table 45. Properties of natural fiber-bio-based polymer compounds.       95
  • Table 46. Properties of natural fiber-bio-based polymer non-woven mats.             96
  • Table 47. Natural fibers in the aerospace sector-market drivers, applications and challenges for NF use.   97
  • Table 48. Natural fiber-reinforced polymer composite in the automotive market. 99
  • Table 49. Natural fibers in the aerospace sector- market drivers, applications and challenges for NF use.  100
  • Table 50. Applications of natural fibers in the automotive industry.           102
  • Table 51. Natural fibers in the building/construction sector- market drivers, applications and challenges for NF use.                103
  • Table 52. Applications of natural fibers in the building/construction sector.           103
  • Table 53. Natural fibers in the sports and leisure sector-market drivers, applications and challenges for NF use.    105
  • Table 54. Natural fibers in the textiles sector-market drivers, applications and challenges for NF use.         106
  • Table 55. Natural fibers in the packaging sector-market drivers, applications and challenges for NF use.    110
  • Table 56. Granbio Nanocellulose Processes.         199
  • Table 57. Oji Holdings CNF products.       255
  •  

FIGURES

  • Figure 1. Carlsberg natural fiber beer bottle.        27
  • Figure 2. Natural fiber composites in the BMW M4 GT4 racing car.             28
  • Figure 3. Absolut natural based fiber bottle cap. 29
  • Figure 4. Types of natural fibers.               34
  • Figure 5. Cotton production volume 2018-2032 (Million MT).       38
  • Figure 6. Kapok production volume 2018-2032 (MT).       39
  • Figure 7.  Luffa cylindrica fiber.  40
  • Figure 8. Jute production volume 2018-2032 (Million MT).             42
  • Figure 9. Hemp fiber production volume 2018-2032 (Million MT).              44
  • Figure 10. Flax fiber production volume 2018-2032 (MT).               46
  • Figure 11. Ramie fiber production volume 2018-2032 (MT).          47
  • Figure 12. Kenaf fiber production volume 2018-2032 (MT).           48
  • Figure 13. Sisal fiber production volume 2018-2032 (MT).              50
  • Figure 14. Abaca fiber production volume 2018-2032 (MT).          51
  • Figure 15. Coir fiber production volume 2018-2032 (MILLION MT).            53
  • Figure 16. Banana fiber production volume 2018-2032 (MT).        54
  • Figure 17. Pineapple fiber.           56
  • Figure 18. A bag made with pineapple biomaterial from the H&M Conscious Collection 2019.         56
  • Figure 19. Bamboo fiber production volume 2018-2032 (MILLION MT).    61
  • Figure 20. Typical structure of mycelium-based foam.     62
  • Figure 21. Commercial mycelium composite construction materials.          63
  • Figure 22. BLOOM masterbatch from Algix.           65
  • Figure 23. Hemp fibers combined with PP in car door panel.         96
  • Figure 24. Car door produced from Hemp fiber.  98
  • Figure 25. Mercedes-Benz components containing natural fibers.               99
  • Figure 26. AlgiKicks sneaker, made with the Algiknit biopolymer gel.         108
  • Figure 27. Coir mats for erosion control. 109
  • Figure 28. Global fiber production in 2019, by fiber type, million MT and %.           112
  • Figure 29. Global fiber production (million MT) to 2020-2032.       113
  • Figure 30. Plant-based fiber production 2018-2032, by fiber type, MT.     115
  • Figure 31. Animal based fiber production 2018-2032, by fiber type, million MT.    115
  • Figure 32. Pluumo.          119
  • Figure 33. Algiknit yarn. 123
  • Figure 34. Amadou leather shoes.            124
  • Figure 35. Anpoly cellulose nanofiber hydrogel.  127
  • Figure 36. MEDICELLU™.               127
  • Figure 37. Asahi Kasei CNF fabric sheet. 129
  • Figure 38. Properties of Asahi Kasei cellulose nanofiber nonwoven fabric.              129
  • Figure 39. CNF nonwoven fabric.               130
  • Figure 40. Roof frame made of natural fiber.        133
  • Figure 41. Natural fibres racing seat.        136
  • Figure 42. Beyond Leather Materials product.     138
  • Figure 43. Fiber-based screw cap.             147
  • Figure 44. Cellugy materials.        155
  • Figure 45. nanoforest-S. 159
  • Figure 46. nanoforest-PDP.         160
  • Figure 47. nanoforest-MB.           160
  • Figure 48. CuanSave film.             164
  • Figure 49. Celish.              165
  • Figure 50. Trunk lid incorporating CNF.   166
  • Figure 51. ELLEX products.           168
  • Figure 52. CNF-reinforced PP compounds.            169
  • Figure 53. Kirekira! toilet wipes. 169
  • Figure 54. Color CNF.      170
  • Figure 55. Rheocrysta spray.       174
  • Figure 56. DKS CNF products.      174
  • Figure 57. Mushroom leather.    178
  • Figure 58. CNF based on citrus peel.        180
  • Figure 59. Citrus cellulose nanofiber.       180
  • Figure 60. Filler Bank CNC products.         185
  • Figure 61. Fibers on kapok tree and after processing.       188
  • Figure 62. Cellulose Nanofiber (CNF) composite with polyethylene (PE).  193
  • Figure 63. CNF products from Furukawa Electric. 195
  • Figure 64. Cutlery samples (spoon, knife, fork) made of nano cellulose and biodegradable plastic composite materials.                201
  • Figure 65. Non-aqueous CNF dispersion "Senaf" (Photo shows 5% of plasticizer). 202
  • Figure 66. CNF gel.           207
  • Figure 67. Block nanocellulose material. 208
  • Figure 68. CNF products developed by Hokuetsu.              208
  • Figure 69. Marine leather products.         209
  • Figure 70. Dual Graft System.     214
  • Figure 71. Engine cover utilizing Kao CNF composite resins.           214
  • Figure 72. Acrylic resin blended with modified CNF (fluid) and its molded product (transparent film), and image obtained with AFM (CNF 10wt% blended).           215
  • Figure 73. Kami Shoji CNF products.         216
  • Figure 74. 0.3% aqueous dispersion of sulfated esterified CNF and dried transparent film (front side).       218
  • Figure 75. BioFlex process.           224
  • Figure 76. Chitin nanofiber product.        228
  • Figure 77. Marusumi Paper cellulose nanofiber products.              230
  • Figure 78. FibriMa cellulose nanofiber powder.  231
  • Figure 79. Cellulomix production process.             233
  • Figure 80. Nanobase versus conventional products.          233
  • Figure 81. MOGU-Wave panels. 237
  • Figure 82. CNF slurries.  238
  • Figure 83. Range of CNF products.            238
  • Figure 84. Reishi.              241
  • Figure 85. Nippon Paper Industries’ adult diapers.             248
  • Figure 86. Leather made from leaves.     249
  • Figure 87. Nike shoe with beLEAF™.        250
  • Figure 88. CNF clear sheets.        255
  • Figure 89. Oji Holdings CNF polycarbonate product.          257
  • Figure 90. XCNF.               267
  • Figure 91. CNF insulation flat plates.        270
  • Figure 92. Manufacturing process for STARCEL.   274
  • Figure 93. Lyocell process.           277
  • Figure 94. North Face Spiber Moon Parka.             280
  • Figure 95. Spider silk production.              281
  • Figure 96. 2 wt.% CNF suspension.          286
  • Figure 97. BiNFi-s Dry Powder.   286
  • Figure 98. BiNFi-s Dry Powder and Propylene (PP) Complex Pellet.             287
  • Figure 99. Silk nanofiber (right) and cocoon of raw material.         287
  • Figure 100. Sulapac cosmetics containers.             289
  • Figure 101. Comparison of weight reduction effect using CNF.     294
  • Figure 102. CNF resin products. 296
  • Figure 103. Vegea production process.   299
  • Figure 104. HefCel-coated wood (left) and untreated wood (right) after 30 seconds flame test.     304
  • Figure 105. Bio-based barrier bags prepared from Tempo-CNF coated bio-HDPE film.        305
  • Figure 106. Worn Again products.             307
  • Figure 107. Zelfo Technology GmbH CNF production process.       309

 

 

The Global Market for Natural Fibers 2022-2032
The Global Market for Natural Fibers 2022-2032
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The Global Market for Natural Fibers 2022-2032
The Global Market for Natural Fibers 2022-2032
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