Perlite and vermiculate are naturally occurring minerals which feature a number of useful properties like good insulation, inertness, low density, fire resistance and ecological friendliness. These properties are coupled with general availability of the two minerals, though sufficient information is unavailable to make reliable estimates of resources in perlite and vermiculite-producing countries.
Major perlite and vermiculite-producing countries in 2016
On the corporate level, the major perlite-producing companies are S&B Industrial Minerals (acquired by Imerys Group in early 2015), IPM Iperlit and World Minerals, while Palabora Mining Company in South Africa and Xinjian Yuli Xinlong in China are the largest vermiculite suppliers worldwide. The above-mentioned properties make perlite and vermiculate solutions applicable in multiple areas and products, including construction, horticulture, animal feed, fire protection, polymer systems, specialized flexible films, papers, coatings, additives, to name only a few. They also underpin quite favourable market environment and bright prospects for perlite and vermiculate markets. So, global vermiculite and perlite demand is foreseen to increase at a rate of 3.5-4.0% a year in the period of 2017-2018. It is expected that the demand for fine, superfine, and micron vermiculite grades (and for more specialized and customized grades as well) will exceed that for coarser grades. As a result, major players on the market of industrial minerals are interested in broadening their speciality offering.
More information on the perlite and vermiculite market can be found in the in-demand research report “Perlite and Vermiculite: 2017 World Market Review and Forecast to 2027”.