Tartaric acid is a crucial acid used in several end-use industries, such as pharmaceutical and winemaking. It’s the latter that has an important role to play in the future of the global tartaric acid market, since it is the leading end-use sector of the market. Fortunately, wine consumption has never been higher than in modern times, and is in fact rising in nontraditional wine regions such as China, India, and other Southeast countries and South American countries such as Chile, Argentina, and Brazil.
Tartaric acid is used in wine to provide its eponymous tart taste. Previously confined to Central Europe and the U.S., winemaking is now flourishing all over the world and is boosting the global tartaric acid market in the process.
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Here are the factors affecting the global wine industry’s demand for tartaric acid:
- Of the two types of tartaric acid – synthetic and natural – natural tartaric acid is usually preferred by winemakers. Even though the chemical composition of the two is exactly the same, synthetic tartaric acid has failed to take off in the winemaking world. Particularly in Europe, which contains some of the largest wine producers in the world and tops the world in regional output of wine, natural tartaric acid is preferred over the synthetic variant. This is expected to boost demand for the same.
- On the other hand, the seasonal demand for tartaric acid, due to the seasonal nature of grape harvests, will lead to a growing number of winemakers adopting synthetic tartaric acid as the convenient choice for year-round production.
- Winemaking activities in emerging regions such as Latin America, Africa, and Asia Pacific are expected to dominate demand from the global tartaric acid market. South Africa and Chile, in particular, are rapidly becoming major players in the global wine market. China, India, and Argentina, also feature high as emerging wine producers, and will claim a sizable share in the total demand for tartaric acid in the coming years.
Other than wine, tartaric acid is also used in the construction, food and beverages, and pharmaceutical industries.
Its application as an anti-set agent in construction is also expected to rise with growing construction activities in emerging regions of the world. The construction industry has posted booming figures for the past few years and the trend doesn’t seem likely to die down just yet. New construction activities in India, China, the GCC countries (including Qatar, where the 2022 FIFA World Cup is expected to bring about a raft of new construction activities), North Africa, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, etc., are a major growth driver for the global tartaric acid market.
Tartaric acid is also used in the pharmaceutical industry as an excipient and a mild acidulant to balance the pH of pharmaceutical end products. This application is growing in prominence with the rapid growth of the global pharmaceutical industry, thanks to the growing prevalence of chronic diseases.
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In the food and beverages industry, tartaric acid is used for flavor and due to its antimicrobial properties, particularly in baked goods. The growing global food and beverages industry is expected to keep up steady demand for tartaric acid in the coming years.