Benzyl Butyl Phthalate (BBP) is an ester of n-butanol, phthalic acid and benzyl alcohol. Benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP) is primarily used as a plasticizer coating for polyvinyl chloride flooring tiles. Other uses include traffic cones, food conveyor belt, sealants, inks, paints and coatings, films, coated fabric, upholstery and artificial leather among others. Benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP) has been known to be toxic for the humans and cause eczema in the new born children whose mothers have been exposed to benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP) dozes higher than 1,200 micrograms per day for long periods of time.
Phthalates have been in use for a long time now and established as an efficient product for a variety of applications owing to their stability, especially as plasticizers. However, non-biodegradable nature and long lifecycles cause misbalances in the ecology. The market for benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP) is primarily driven by its use in the polyvinyl chloride flooring tiles as a plasticizer coating, especially in Asia Pacific. However, due to its toxic nature it is being gradually phased out of use being replaced by biobased substitutes. Furthermore, the volatility in the prices of petrochemical raw materials is another restraining factor for the demand growth of this market.
Benzyl butyl phthalates (BBP), based on their end-use applications, can be classified broadly into two categories as polymer end-use applications and non-polymer end-use applications. Polymer end-use applications can be further divided into three end-use applications as flooring, hard PVC and others including films, coated fabrics, upholstery, luggage, footwear, etc. Non-polymer end-use applications can be further segmented into three end-use applications as adhesives and sealants, paints and ink and others. Polymer end-use applications account for more than a half of the benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP) end-use applications worldwide out of which flooring accounts for the major market demand owing to their durability. Adhesives and sealant is estimated to be another major end-use application (non-polymer) of benzyl butyl phthalate ((BBP) with a market share near to a quarter of the market. Paints and ink is another significant non-polymer end-use application segment for benzyl butyl phthalate market.
In terms of geography, the rapidly expanding market in the Asia Pacific is anticipated to fuel the demand for benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP). Rapid growth in the construction activities especially in the high growth nations such as China, India and other South East Asian countries are expected to be the major demand markets for flooring and adhesive & sealant applications of benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP). Furthermore, rapid urbanization in these high GDP nations is instilling a demand for infrastructure, building and construction projects. In North America and Europe the rising awareness and health consciousness has concluded in a shift towards biobased alternatives to phthalates including benzyl butyl phthalates (BBP). In Europe, benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP) is being gradually phased out with only two manufactures producing it at present. This move is in accordance with the strict regulations introduced by REACH against toxic products such as phthalates including benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP). In North America, Canada has banned the use of benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP) in children toys and child care products while in the U.S. it has been listed as a developmental toxicant in 2005 by Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) based in California.
Some of the players in the benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP) market include Alfa Aesar (Johnson Matthey Company), Ferro Corporation and Hallstar Company among others.
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