The viscose staple fiber market is expected to take the developing economies such as Thailand, Indonesia, and India by storm in the upcoming period. As such, the APAC is ruling the market as of now and will continue to do so in the near future; as it is the highest exporter of viscose staple fiber. The highest importers of viscose staple fiber are the western European markets.
Viscose fiber is regenerated from cellulose. At the onset it would look similar to cotton; but the raw material could be sugarcane, bamboo, or soy. Viscose gets prepared by dissolving cellulose pulp with caustic soda (sodium hydroxide); thereby forming alkali cellulose. Thereafter, carbon disulfide is treated with alkali cellulose for forming sodium cellulose xanthate.
Viscose staple fiber was invented by Hilare de Chardonnet, a French scientist in the late 19th century. However, it was patented by Edward John Bevan and Charles Frederick Cross (patent no. 8700) by the name “Improvements in Dissolving Cellulose and Allied Compounds” in May 1892. One of the factors that could act as a hindrance to viscose staple fiber market could be use of rayon that makes use of N-methylmorpholine N-oxide as solvent (using Lyocell process); thereby rendering it more eco-friendly.
Apart from fiber, synthetic velvet, sausage castings, rayon, cellophane, and art silk could also be made out of viscose. The other concern is the toxicity of carbon disulfide. Though utmost care is taken to recover it during production, many tragic incidents on this count have been witnessed in the past. Hence, workers’ safety continues to be of grave concern. The key players like Aditya Birla Chemicals and Sateri Holdings Ltd. Are eyeing organic as well as inorganic expansion to put their best foot forward in 2019. Their newslines may soon be flooded with success stories on this part.