The global lactase market size is estimated to be valued at USD 217 million in 2020 and is projected to reach USD 298 million by 2025, recording a CAGR of 6.5% during the forecast period. Lactase also plays a major role in increasing the shelf-life of dairy products, thus increasing the freshness. Due to its importance in the food industry and the rising level of lactose intolerance, lactase is gaining popularity in the dairy industry. These are the major factors encouraging the growth of the lactase market globally.
Restraints: Shifting preferences toward dairy-free alternatives
One of the major functional requirements by consumers, in recent times, have been the need for dairy alternatives for removing the problems of cow milk allergy, calorie concerns, lactose intolerance, and prevalence of hypercholesterolemia. The consumption of plant-based dairy products has been increased owing to the absence of lactose and cholesterol in the dairy products, which makes the products suitable for a group of population suffering from heart disease and lactose intolerance and in general for all. Moreover, in recent years, plant sources such as legumes and cereals have been highly accepted as functional food and nutraceuticals because of the health promoting components present in them such as minerals, dietary fibers, antioxidants and vitamins. Owing to these benefits over dairy products, the demand for plant-based dairy is increasing. The rising opportunity in the dairy free sector is restraining the growth of lactose-free dairy products, which can be a one of the restraints for the lactase enzyme, as it is the prime raw material used for processing regular dairy products into lactose-free dairy products.
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Opportunities: Research & development and new sources of lactase extraction
Lactase is usually extracted from yeast. However, an extensive research & development is going on regarding the other sources of lactase enzymes, such as bacteria and fungi. Lactase enzymes extracted from bacterial sources have been used for lactose hydrolysis because of numerous benefits, such as their ease of fermentation, high activity, and the stability of the enzyme. Lactase enzymes sourced from a probiotic organism are used for food and food systems. Fungal sources of lactase enzymes possess optimal acidic pH range of 2.2 to 5.4. Owing to this, lactase sourced from fungi are more effective for the hydrolysis of lactose found in acidic substances, such as whey. These fungi-based enzymes are highly stable enzymes. The increasing research & developments about various sources of lactase enzymes gives opportunity to the lactase enzyme market to grow in the period forecasted.
The yeast segment is projected to account for a major share in the lactase market during the forecast period
By source, the lactase market is segmented into yeast, fungi, and bacteria. The increase in awareness among the lactose-intolerant population and the rise in innovative products are some of the key factors encouraging the growth of the lactase market. Moreover, the technological advancement in the extraction of lactase through yeast offers potential growth for the lactase market. Low production cost and ease in the processing of yeast are the key factors encouraging the growth of yeast-based lactase.
The North America region dominated the lactase market with the largest share in 2019, whereas Asia-Pacific is expected to witness the highest growth rate.
The lactase market in North America is dominant due to the growing demand for different types of lactose-free products such as drinkable yogurt, ice-cream, and flavored milk. Increasing awareness about lactose intolerance among consumers and growing inclination towards health promoting dietary supplements are the key factors that are projected to drive the growth of the market in the North American region.
The fastest growing market is Asia-Pacific for lactase. The increase in awareness and self-diagnosis among lactose intolerant population, also growing consumption of lactose-free products offers potential growth for the lactase manufactures in the region. The increase in health concerns and the growing trend of opting for reduced added sugar/no added sugar claims have created growth opportunities for lactase in the region. Major players such as Valio Ltd. (Finland), expanded its production facility in China to cater lactose-free products for lactose intolerant population.
Key players in this market include Chr. Hansen Holdings A/S (Denmark), Kerry Group (Ireland), Koninklijke DSM N.V (the Netherlands), Novozymes (Denmark), Merck KGaA (Germany), DuPont (US), Senson (Finland), Amano Enzyme (Japan), Advanced Enzyme Technologies (India), Enmex (Mexico), Antozyme Biotech Pvt. Ltd. (US), Nature Bioscience Pvt. Ltd. (India), Aumgene Biosciences (India), Creative Enzymes (US), Biolaxi Corporation (India), Novact Corporation (US), Enzyme Bioscience (India), Infinita Biotech Private Limited (India), Rajvi Enterprise (India), and Mitushi Biopharma (India).