Chitosan is currently being touted as a key supplement offering health benefits including weight loss. The adoption of this supplement is anticipated to increase steadily in the manufacture of antimicrobial films for food packaging and wound dressing, among other applications, due to its positive attributes like biodegradability.
Investigations and research studies have revealed that chitosan and chitin show promising results against viral infections, including SARS-CoV-2, thus expanding the scope of the chitosan market during the coronavirus pandemic. In addition, chitosan-based nanoparticles can be deployed in advanced drug delivery systems, given their remarkable biological and physicochemical characteristics, along with their ability to alter protein loading and adjust each parameter’s value during preparation.
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Owing to such favorable properties, chitosan has been gaining widespread adoption across a range of industry verticals such as cosmetics and agriculture, with 4 key factors contributing to its popularity listed below:
- Sales of high-grade creams in the APAC
The acceleration of self-care and wellness trends during the novel coronavirus pandemic has led to the rising sales of beauty products to reduce premature skin aging in regions like the Asia Pacific. Cica hair oils, eyebrow make-up, and creams, for example, are among the sought-after cosmetic products in Japan. Despite the adverse impacts of the pandemic on the halal cosmetic and fragrance sectors globally, it has also created opportunities for new product lines like face and hand creams.
Cosmetic-grade chitosan is considered suitable for products like high-grade creams, lotions, and moisturizers products, due to its good moisture absorption, conditioning, antibacterial, and other functions. The pandemic-driven sales of beauty and personal care products are therefore expected to contribute to the increasing popularity of the chitosan industry in the APAC region.
- Government spending on agricultural schemes
In developing economies like India, crop insurance and other schemes implemented by the Department of Agriculture are offering subsidies to varied aspects of agriculture like credit, mechanization, insurance, irrigation, and other interventions.
According to data from the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, the Indian government has incurred an expenditure of over $23.2 billion on 13 major agricultural schemes between 2016 to 2021. As a result, the deployment of chitosan fertilizers and insecticides will witness an upsurge in the thriving agricultural sector.
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- Federal programs for drinking and wastewater treatment
Over the past decades, government agencies have modified and authorized federal programs to help communities address water infrastructure and supply needs, including both drinking and wastewater. According to the U.S.’s Congressional Research Service, over $157 million has been allocated for the Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance programs of the EDA, with wastewater and water projects among the eligible uses. Such initiatives are expected to result in the rise of water treatment activities and subsequently drive the demand for chitosan and its derivatives to ensure efficient clarification and flocculation of aggregates and particles in water.
- Burden of obesity and other chronic conditions
Apart from prominent application scope in agriculture, chitosan has been gaining massive ground in the healthcare landscape over the past years. Various supplement companies have claimed that this compound can support lower cholesterol levels and weight loss. The growing prevalence of obesity and other related health complications, even among children under the age of 5, will thus amplify chitosan market development for healthcare applications.
According to the WHO, over 39 million children aged under 5 years were obese or overweight in 2020. Such factors, along with the growing burden of kidney failure in the U.S., are likely to fuel the need for the compound to treat complications often faced by kidney failure patients, such as high cholesterol and insomnia.
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