As per a new study, ‘Excipients’, of the Freedonia Group Inc, a Cleveland-based industry market research firm, the demand for pharmaceutical excipients in the US is projected to rise 4.3% per year to $2 billion in 2018. In volume terms, demand is expected to grow 1.9% annually to 900 million pounds over the same period. Emily Park, Analyst, Freedonia, said, “The best growth prospects are expected for products that offer a good balance among performance, compatibility with other excipients, and overall cost.”
Excipients for use in parenteral preparations will offer good opportunities as output of these formulations is expected to rise at a healthy pace going forward. Excipients in oral formulations such as tablets and capsules will also see strong growth as shipments of oral preparations are expected to accelerate.
Product versatility will be a key factor impacting product mix in excipient demand going forward, especially as specialty excipient blends play an increasingly important role in pharmaceutical formulation. Polymers - including cellulose derivatives, povidone, starch, polyethylene glycol, acrylic polymers, and natural gums - are expected to especially benefit from this trend as many of these products can function in multiple applications and are easily formulated with other excipients. These favorable characteristics will serve to offset the higher prices associated with some polymers.
Trends in pharmaceutical output by dosage formulation will also have a strong influence on excipient demand by application. Output of parenteral preparations is expected to rise at an especially strong pace through 2018, supporting demand for suspension agents and preservatives. Solvents are also projected to benefit from increased shipments of parenteral drugs, although gains in dollar terms will be limited by the continued decline in glycerin prices due to oversupply.
Oral preparations are the largest category of pharmaceutical dosage formulations, and oral pharmaceuticals tend to require more excipients than other types of drugs; as a result, trends in oral pharmaceutical output have a significant impact on excipient demand. Shipments of oral pharmaceuticals are forecast to rise at a faster pace than in the 2008-2013 period, supporting accelerated gains in demand for fillers, binders, coatings, flavouring agents, capsules, and disintegrants. Oral formulations such as delayed- or extended-release tablets and capsules or orally-dissolving tablets are expected to increase their market share, further boosting demand for excipients such as binders and disintegrants.