Fiber is also known as bulk or roughage. Functional fibers are a type of fiber obtained from their natural source. Functional fibers are the derivatives of carbohydrates and are beneficial for health. These functional fibers are used as supplements that promote health. The demand for functional fibers is expected to increase in the coming time period because of the growing trend of health and fitness. Dietary fiber is useful to cure constipation and diarrhea, and also beneficial for the treatment of obesity. Due to their health beneficial properties, the market demand for functional fibers is increasing these days in many industries, which includes food, pharmaceuticals, nutraceuticals, and other end-use industries.
Depending upon the end-use application, there is the availability of various grades of functional fibers. The prices of functional fibers also vary according to these grades. For example, functional fibers that are being used in dietary supplements are priced higher, because the level of purity for food-grade functional fibers is high.
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Health Benefits of Functional Fibers Lead to Increasing Demand
The demand for functional fiber is increasing in the food & beverage industry, as the demand for functional food and ready-to-eat products has been increasing these days. Functional fiber is an enriched source of vital vitamins & minerals, due to which, its demand has been increasing. Functional fibers maintain a healthy digestive system by promoting the growth of healthy bacteria in the small as well as large intestines. Functional fibers help in weight management, lower cholesterol levels, maintain blood glucose levels, and improve the immune system. Consumers are focusing on those products that have all the basic nutrients in them. The sedentary lifestyle of consumers has boosted the market demand for functional fibers.
Thus, functional fiber supplements have become very popular, especially in the developed regions such as North America and Europe, where the consumption of external supplements for additional nutrition is high.
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Functional Fibers Market: Regional Analysis
The use of functional fibers is the highest in North America. This is due to the high demand for functional fibers mainly being for food and dietary supplements, of which, North America is the largest market. The United States has the highest percentage of the obese population, hence, the market demand for functional fibers is very high in this region. However, the demand for functional fibers is expected to increase in the Asia Pacific for the production of dietary supplements. The use of functional fibers in the personal care and cosmetics industry is expected to increase as well, which will increase its demand in Europe and MEA in the coming years. But the growth rates in the regions will not be as high as that in the Asia Pacific.
The prices of functional fibers are very high, due to which, the growth of the functional fibers market is being restricted. But, a lot of research is being carried to manufacture functional fibers with low production costs, which could reduce their prices and increase the market demand, globally. Market entrants who are trying to expand their footprint should emphasize on the ease of procuring raw materials to increase production.
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Functional Fibers Market: Key Participants
Key players in the global functional fibers market are:
- J. RETTENMAIER & SÖHNE GmbH + Co KG
- CFF GmbH & Co. KG
- Axys Nutrition Products Pvt. Ltd.
- Royal DSM NV