Europe Activated Carbon Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2021 - 2026)

The Europe Activated Carbon market is segmented by Type (Powdered Activated Carbon, Granular Activated Carbon, and Extruded or Pelletized Activated Carbon), Application (Gas Purification, Water Purification, Metal Extraction, Medicine, and Other Applications), and Geography (Germany, United Kingdom, Italy, France, Spain, and Rest of Europe). The report offers market size and forecast for Europe Activated Carbon in revenue (USD Million) for all the above segments.

Market Snapshot

Europe Activated Carbon Market - Market Summary
Study Period: 2016 - 2026
Base Year: 2020
CAGR: 5 %

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Market Overview

Europe activated carbon market is valued at USD 848.65 million in 2020 and is estimated to register a CAGR of 5% during the forecast period (2021-2026). A major factor driving Europe's activated carbon market is augmenting prominence for air pollution control (especially mercury removal). The UN Economic Commission for Europe Working Group on heavy metals is now preparing protocols on emission reduction for these pollutants. Mercury is considered a priority element in addition to cadmium and lead. This is expected to contribute to the market demand

  • On the flipside, the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak and the threat of substitutes, like silica gel, and the development of better alternatives are expected to hinder the market growth.
  • Rising demand from the food and beverage industry and emerging applications in the medical and pharmaceutical sector are likely to act as opportunities in the future.
  • Germany accounted for the largest market share and is expected to continue domination during the forecast period.

Scope of the report

Europe activated carbon market is segmented by type, application, and geography. By type, the market is segmented into Powdered Activated Carbon, Granular Activated Carbon, and Extruded or Pelletized Activated Carbon. On the basis of application, the market is segmented into Gas Purification, Water Purification, Metal Extraction, Medicine, and Other Applications. The report also covers the market sizes and forecasts for the Activated Carbon market in 5 countries across European region. For each segment, the market sizing and forecasts have been done on the basis of revenue (USD million).

Powdered Activated Carbon (PAC)
Granular Activated Carbon (GAC)
Extruded or Pelletized Activated Carbon
Gas Purification
Water Purification
Fixed/Semi-fixed Filtration
Mobile Filtration
Metal Extraction
Other Applications
United Kingdom
Rest of Europe

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Key Market Trends

Medicine Segment to Drive the Market Growth

Activated carbon is used in hemodialysis and pharmaceutical applications. It is used to remove contaminants, like chlorine and chloramine, which can be harmful to the patients, from the water that is used for dialysis. Activated charcoal is commonly taken by mouth to treat poisonings. It is also used for intestinal gas, high cholesterol, hangovers, upset stomach, and bile flow problems during pregnancy.

In pharmaceutical applications, activated carbon is used to remove color and impurities from the intermediates and the final products. It is used in the purification and recovery of vitamins, steroids, pain killers, active pharmaceutical ingredients, antibiotics, and some other pharmaceutical products. The pharmaceutical products such as APIs and intermediates must be of the highest purity without any trace elements/ impurities which could lead to serious illness/ diseases like cancer, etc. Stringent regulations and regularly updated regulations from the European agency are likely to drive the market for activated carbon in pharmaceutical applications.

According to the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations, the total production value of the pharmaceutical industry in 2019 was estimated to be around EUR 275 billion compared to EUR 259.86 billion in 2018. The R&D expenditure was estimated to be around EUR 37.5 billion in 2019 compared to EUR 36.3 billion in 2018. Pharmaceutical production in Europe is on the rise. The increasing exports from the region are driving the production of pharmaceuticals in the region. Furthermore, the high R&D expenditure in the medical sector is expected to drive pharmaceutical production in the region. Furthermore, the COVID-19 outbreak has become a growth wagon for the demand for activated carbon in the pharmaceutical applications of the region (particularly in Italy, Spain, Russia, and the United Kingdom).

The growing demand for pharmaceutical products and medical applications of activated carbon is expected to drive the market during the forecast period.

Europe Activated Carbon Market - Segmentation Trends

Germany to Dominate the Market

The German economy is the largest in Europe and the fifth-largest in the world. In 2019, the German economy grew by about 0.6%, which had been its weakest growth rate in the last five years. The economic growth of the country is affected by various factors, such as trade tensions leading to reduced exports, and recent government policies on debts and fiscal adjustments. The country is in plans to stop the further downfall of the economy, due to the COVID-19 impact by announcing availability funds (of over USD 600 billion), to ensure growth and smooth functioning in various public sectors in the near future. According to the recent IMF forecasts, due to the outbreak of the COVID-19, the GDP growth of the country has fallen to -6% in 2020 and is projected to register a 4.2% growth in 2021 as a part of recovery.

The German water treatment technology market is the largest in Europe and is still growing at a considerable pace. The increasing water treatment activities, primarily in the northern region of the country, are boosting the demand for activated carbon. Currently, the country’s water supply and wastewater treatment sectors together account for about ~EUR 22 billion annually. Environmental protection and human health are considered extremely important in Germany. Germany has the highest wastewater reprocessing and the recycling rate in Europe with more than 96% of wastewater from private households or public facilities is diverted to sewage processing plants. Moreover, 10.07 billion cubic meters of wastewater is treated in public sewage treatment facilities, annually with just under 10,000 wastewater treatment facilities.

Germany has the largest market for industrial wastewater treatment in Europe, with almost 3,000 treatment plants in around 12,000 discharging companies. More than 920 million cubic meters of industrial wastewater is treated annually in the country, before being discharged to the outside environment. Additionally, according to the Federal Ministry, about 99% of the people in Germany have direct access to wastewater treatment plants. Germany is one of the largest steel-producing nations in Europe. According to the World Steel Association, in 2019, the total steel production in Germany accounted for a total of 39.7 million metric tons, down by 6.5% compared to 2018 (~42.4 million metric tons). The amount of steel produced till November 2020 is 32.52 million tons compared to 36.79 million tons during the same period in 2019 down by 11.6%. The steel production is expected to recover and grow during the forecast period.

In Europe, Germany holds the largest healthcare market. The annual expenditure on health in the country is estimated to be more than EUR 350 billion, excluding fitness and wellness. With the demographic changes and digitalization, the country has been investing in the mobile healthcare facility, which is providing a platform for the further expansion of the German healthcare sector. The country is home to Europe’s largest pharmaceutical industry. It is also known as the “World’s Pharmacy” in the global market. With the active presence of multiple global pharmaceutical companies, it has gained a significant place in the pharmaceutical market. Owing to the huge number of pharmaceutical companies and continuous research to develop new drugs, there has been an increased demand for the market studied in the sector. The German economy is estimated to take a major hit due to the ongoing COVID-19 impact, due to expected production halts and decreasing investments due to the ongoing lockdown situation in the country. The activated carbon market in the country is estimated to recovery from late 2021 and is expected to drive the market.

Europe Activated Carbon Market - Regional Trends

Competitive Landscape

The European activated carbon market is consolidated, with the top seven players accounting for around 70% of the market share. Major players in the market include Kuraray Co. Ltd, Cabot Corporation, Jacobi Carbons Ab (Osaka Gas Chemicals Co. Ltd), Ingevity, Desotec, Donau Chemie AG, and Carbotech AC GmbH, among others.

Recent Developments

  • In May 2020, Ozinga Energy and Ingevity have announced a partnership to begin a field demonstration of adsorbed natural gas (ANG) bi-fuel pickup trucks.
  • In Jan 2020, The company Oxbow Activated Carbon was acquired by a group of investors facilitated by Wells Fargo CF U.K. and subsequently the company’s name was changed to Puragen Activated Carbon.

Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Drivers

      1. 4.1.1 Augmenting Prominence for Air Pollution Control (Especially Mercury Removal)

    2. 4.2 Restraints

      1. 4.2.1 Threat of Substitutes like Silica Gel and Development of Better Alternatives

      2. 4.2.2 Impact of COVID-19 Outbreak

    3. 4.3 Industry Value-Chain Analysis

    4. 4.4 Porters Five Force Analysis

      1. 4.4.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      2. 4.4.2 Bargaining Power of Consumers

      3. 4.4.3 Threat of New Entrants

      4. 4.4.4 Threat of Substitute Products and Services

      5. 4.4.5 Degree of Competition

    5. 4.5 Supply Scenario


    1. 5.1 Type

      1. 5.1.1 Powdered Activated Carbon (PAC)

      2. 5.1.2 Granular Activated Carbon (GAC)

      3. 5.1.3 Extruded or Pelletized Activated Carbon

    2. 5.2 Application

      1. 5.2.1 Gas Purification

      2. 5.2.2 Water Purification

        1. Fixed/Semi-fixed Filtration

        2. Mobile Filtration

      3. 5.2.3 Metal Extraction

      4. 5.2.4 Medicine

      5. 5.2.5 Other Applications

    3. 5.3 Geography

      1. 5.3.1 Germany

      2. 5.3.2 United Kingdom

      3. 5.3.3 France

      4. 5.3.4 Italy

      5. 5.3.5 Spain

      6. 5.3.6 Rest of Europe


    1. 6.1 Mergers & Acquisitions, Joint Ventures, Collaborations, and Agreements

    2. 6.2 Market Share Analysis

    3. 6.3 Strategies Adopted by Leading Players

    4. 6.4 Company Profiles

      1. 6.4.1 Albemarle Corporation

      2. 6.4.2 Cabot Corporation

      3. 6.4.3 Carbon Activated Corporation

      4. 6.4.4 CarboTech AC GmbH

      5. 6.4.5 Chemviron SA

      6. 6.4.6 CPL Activated Carbon

      7. 6.4.7 Desotec

      8. 6.4.8 Donau Chemie Group

      9. 6.4.9 Ingevity

      10. 6.4.10 Jacobi Carbons Ab (Osaka Gas Chemicals Co. Ltd)

      11. 6.4.11 Kuraray Co. Ltd

      12. 6.4.12 Kureha Corporation

      13. 6.4.13 Puragen Activated Carbons

      14. 6.4.14 Veolia Water SA

    5. *List Not Exhaustive

    1. 7.1 Rising Demand from the Food and Beverage Industry

    2. 7.2 Emerging Applications in the Medical and Pharmaceutical Sector

**Subject to Availability

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Frequently Asked Questions

The Europe Activated Carbon Market market is studied from 2016 - 2026.

The Europe Activated Carbon Market is growing at a CAGR of 5% over the next 5 years.

Kuraray Co. Ltd, Cabot Corporation, Jacobi Carbons Ab (Osaka Gas Chemicals Co. Ltd), Ingevity, Desotec are the major companies operating in Europe Activated Carbon Market.

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