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Big Opportunity for Chemical Firms from Phthalate Phaseout

Plasticizers called phthalates — used in everything from plastic shower curtains to car dashboards — are being phased out of the marketplace due to environmental, health and safety concerns.

This presents a major opportunity for chemical manufacturers, such as those that make phthalate replacements, reports Chemical and Engineering News.

The publication reports that Apple eliminated phthalates from its cables in 2013 while Home Depot and Lowe’s have said they will get rid of phthalates in vinyl flooring by the end of this year.

“If there are question marks around a material you are using, people will want to stay away from it if there is an alternative available,” Steve Cullen, plasticizers business director at Eastman Chemical, tells C&EN. Eastman makes a nonphthalate alternatives called dioctyl terephthalate (DOTP), also known as di(2-ethylhexyl) terephthalate (DEHT).

IHS Chemical forecasts global phthalate demand to grow by about 2 percent per year, while nonphthalate plasticizers will see 7 percent growth.



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