Empty Capsules Market at a CAGR of ~7% from 2019 to 2027, and reach ~US$ 3.7 Bn by the end of 2030

Empty Capsules Market Thrives with a Thrust from Research & Product Enhancement

Drug capsules made from gelatin act as superior carriers of both, hydrophilic and lipophilic drugs, and render them protection from degradation. In the past few years, drug delivery through capsules has undergone significant transformation in terms of product enhancement, to ensure high quality prognosis and patient comfort. New and improved capsule sealing techniques, innovations in fill material, and improvements in capsule shells are levelling the playing field for key stakeholders. The larger profit pool accruing from these is bolstering the growth of the empty capsules market, which is all set to expand at a CAGR of ~7% during the forecast period of 2019-2027.

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With the proliferation of R&D initiatives, the global empty capsules market is foreseen to witness an exceptional growth rate. Clinical trials conducted toward the encapsulation of new and existing drugs are grabbing eyeballs, and capturing a white space in the market which had previously remained untapped. Factors such as the penetrative reach of preventive care in developing regions, high bioavailability, and elasticity of capsules will fuel their demand. As a result, the global empty capsules market will see a near two-fold growth over the forecast period.

Popularity of Non-gelatin Capsules Rises; Gelatin Capsules Still Reign Supreme

Gelatin, historically and predominantly has been used as a film former for hard and soft shell capsules. As it is a purified protein obtained from the collagen of animals, speculations have risen about its use amid concerns over animal safety. Consequently, the gelatin capsules segment is projected to lose market share during the forecast period. This will also drive the demand for environment-friendly, non-gelatin capsules, which will see a meteoric growth of ~11% during the forecast period. Despite the over-arching claims surrounding its controversial usage, gelatin capsules will continue to dominate the market, accounting for ~89% of the market share in 2027.

Cardiovascular Drug Capsules Cashing in, Uptick in Demand for Vitamin and Dietary Capsules

In terms of revenue, the cardiovascular therapy drugs segment captured the second-largest share in the market of empty capsules in 2018. Being the number one cause of death, globally, its impact is significant. Cardiovascular drug capsules will see an uptick in sales and profitability, which is essential for its sustained, long-term growth. It will be one of the fastest-growing segments, at an impressive CAGR of ~8%, and will see its valuation double by the end of 2027.

A paradigm shift towards preventive healthcare will see a surge in the uptake of vitamin and dietary supplements. Health consciousness and evolving dietary habits will drive their demand, propelling this segment into a high-growth phase. With vitamin and dietary supplements capturing the largest chunk of the empty capsules market share in 2018, its dominance will continue through 2027.

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Pharmaceuticals accounted for 65% of the empty capsules market share in 2018. Even though this segment is projected to lose some of its market share by 2027, it will retain its hold in the market right through the forecast period. Fuelled by new therapeutic drugs, these will continue to drive the demand for empty capsules.

Natural Gelatin and Nutraceuticals: Two Keys to Unlock Potential

As animal sources of gelatin capsules are culture- and religion-sensitive, this could impede the global empty capsules market to some extent. It would also give traction to natural or synthetic sources of gelatin, and would pave the way for their upward growth trajectory. However, product yield from these sources is comparatively lesser, though increased output from these sources is possible with technological intervention.

Healthier lifestyles have led to a rampant increase in the demand and consumption of nutraceuticals. Available in the gelatin capsule format, they are propelling the growth of the empty capsules market. Nutraceutical applications have evolved considerably over the last few years, and have gained significant recognition in the food and dietary supplements market, owing to their superlative nutritional profile and technological properties. As nutraceuticals witness greater adoption, stakeholders will respond promptly to optimize their growth and enhance competitiveness.

Europe’s Attractiveness Soars, Asia Pacific Catching Up

Europe is projected to be the most attractive region in the empty capsules market, with an attractiveness index of 1.9 during the forecast period. The presence of key pharmaceutical and nutraceutical industries along with the incessant adoption of newer technologies will be some of the factors that put Europe into the spotlight.

Asia Pacific will be the third-most attractive regional market for empty capsules in terms of attractiveness, and will see its revenue triple by the end of the forecast period. Rise in per capita healthcare expenditure in countries such as China and India will bolster the growth of the market in these regions.

lmplementing Strategies of Innovation and Expansion to Tap into Newer Markets

The global market for empty capsules is fairly consolidated, with a few players such as

  1. Capsugel (Part of Lonza)
  2. ACG Worldwide
  3. Qualicaps (Subsidiary of Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Corporation)
  4. CapsCanada
  5. Suheung Co. Ltd.
  6. Roxlor
  7. Medi-Caps Ltd.
  8. HealthCaps India Ltd.

Sunil Healthcare Limited

accounting for a majority share of the market. At the regional level, however, fragmentation can be seen, with smaller players accounting for a relatively larger share of the market. Leading players in the market are establishing their foothold in the global empty capsules market through R&D, product innovation, and capacity expansion. For instance:

In Feb 2018, Capsugel launched a new R&D centre for South America in Salto, Brazil, making way for product innovation.

Recently Qualicaps invested US$ 12 Mn to expand its facility in Bucharest, Romania, to increase its production capacity.

Roxlar has developed proprietary capsule technologies to produce hard capsules with marine gelatin from Pullulan, which is a natural polysaccharide.

Global Empty Capsules Market: Overview

The empty capsules market for the historical period of 2017–2018 and forecast period of 2019–2027, rising demand from pharmaceutical and nutraceutical Industries and increasing R&D activities for the development of novel delivery systems are anticipated to drive the global empty capsules market.

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According to the report, the global empty capsules market was valued at ~US$ 1.9 Bn in 2018.

The global empty capsules market is projected to expand at a CAGR of ~7% from 2019 to 2027, and reach ~US$ 3.7 Bn by the end of 2027.

Rapid Expansion of Nutraceutical and Pharmaceutical Industry: A Key Driver

Biopharmaceutical & pharmaceutical companies and consumer health & nutrition industries are major end users of empty capsules. Therefore, the demand for empty capsules is largely dependent on the expansion of life science and healthcare industries. The life science industry is expanding at a rapid pace in developing markets. This is projected to boost the empty capsules market during the forecast period.

According to the World Industry Outlook, the global pharmaceutical market is projected to reach US$ 1.2 Trn by 2020, expanding at a CAGR of 4.4% from 2016 to 2020. Pharmaceutical spending in Latin America is anticipated to increase at a CAGR of 6.6% between 2016 and 2020.

Empty Capsules Market: Focus on Customized Standards

In the empty capsules market, companies are gaining expertise in custom synthesis by designing different methods for the synthesis of capsules. Custom synthesis of empty capsules are backed by analytical data to suit the needs of customers. Moreover, companies keep stock of custom synthesized empty capsule products for rapid reorder availability.

Various manufacturers of empty capsules are taking efforts to ensure the availability of a range of seamless scale-up options. These companies are also focused on transferring custom synthesized empty capsule materials to large-scale manufacturing facilities and GMP facilities.

For instance, Capsugel produces ConiSnap capsules for pharmaceuticals and healthcare companies, worldwide. The empty capsule products comprise of company patented design and technology (lipid-based technologies). ConiSnap Sprinkle capsules are specifically designed to be easily opened by patients and caregivers, enabling them to dose the contents of the capsule in a consistent manner. ConiSnap capsules are utilized in diverse applications due to their availability in multiple sizes, colors, and printing options. Moreover, ConiSnap can be also customized to meet specific drug profile requirements, making them a unique and innovative delivery system.

Social & Ethical Obligations to Hamper Global Empty Capsules Market

The main source of manufacturing empty capsules is gelatin. Gelatin is obtained from the tissues, skin, and bones of domestic animals such as pigs (porcine gelatin), marine animals (marine gelatin), chicken (chicken gelatin), ox, and other cattle (bovine gelatin). Porcine and bovine are extensively utilized sources of gelatin to manufacture empty capsules. On the other hand, other sources for the manufacture of empty capsules include marine gelatin. Therefore, the marine segment is expected to expand at a steady growth rate during the forecast period, due to distinct advantages of marine gelatin over bovine and porcine gelatin (less threat of disease transmission as compared to that in bovine and porcine gelatin, and ease of manufacture), and abundant availability of raw materials.

However, social and ethical obligations (prohibition of use of animal products in religions) are likely to restrain the adoption of these products during the forecast period.

Well-documented synthesis of standard capsules is considerably inexpensive than natural sources. This imposes a pricing pressure on major empty capsule manufacturers, thereby increasing the prices of these empty capsules. The dominance of local players offering a wide range of empty capsules at lower rates hampers the geographic expansion of major players in a particular region, and consequently, restrains the empty capsule market.

Global Empty Capsules Market: Competition Landscape

This report profiles major players in the global empty capsules market based on various attributes such as company overview, financial overview, product portfolio, business strategies, and recent developments.

The global empty capsules market is highly fragmented, with the presence of a large number of international as well as regional players in the market.

Prominent empty capsule players operating in the global empty capsules market include

  • ACG Worldwide
  • Capsugel
  • Qualicaps
  • HealthCaps India Ltd
  • Natural Capsules Limited
  • CapsCanada Corporation
  • Roxlor
  • Qingdao Yiqing Medicinal Capsules Co., Ltd.

Key Questions Answered in Empty Capsules Market Report

  • What is the scope of growth of product companies in the empty capsules market?
  • What will be the Y-o-Y growth of the empty capsules market from 2019 and 2027?
  • What is the influence of changing trends in technologies on the global empty capsules market?
  • Will North America continue to remain the most profitable regional market for empty capsules providers?
  • Which factors are anticipated to impede the growth of the global empty capsules market during the forecast period?
  • Which are the leading companies in the global empty capsules market?

Global Empty Capsules Market – Segmentation


  • Antibiotic & Antibacterial Drugs
  • Vitamin & Dietary Supplements
  • Antacid & Antiflatulent Preparations
  • Cardiovascular Therapy Drugs
  • Cough & Cold Drugs
  • Other Applications


  • Immediate-release Capsules
  • Sustained-release Capsules
  • Delayed-release Capsules


  • Porcine
  • Bovine
  • Marine
  • Natural


  • Gelatin Capsules
  • Hard Gelatin
  • Soft Gelatin
  • Non-gelatin Capsules

End User

  • Pharmaceutical Industry
  • Nutraceutical Industry
  • Other End Users


  • North America
  • Europe
  • Asia Pacific
  • Latin America
  • Middle East & Africa


1. Preface

1.1. Market Definition and Scope

1.2. Market Segmentation

1.3. Key Research Objectives

1.4. Research Highlights

2. Assumptions and Research Methodology

3. Executive Summary : Global Empty Capsules Market

4. Market Overview

4.1. Introduction

4.1.1. Type Definition

4.1.2. Industry Evolution / Developments

4.2. Overview

4.3. Market Dynamics

4.3.1. Drivers

4.3.2. Restraints

4.3.3. Opportunities

4.4. Global Empty Capsules Market Analysis and Forecast, 2017–2027

4.4.1. Market Revenue Projections (US$ Mn)

4.4.2. Market Volume/Unit Shipments Projections

4.5. Porter’s Five Force Analysis

5. Key Insights

5.1. Regulation of Dietary Supplements

5.2. Dietary Supplements: Export-Import Analysis

5.3. Gelatin Price Analysis

5.4. Healthcare overview by Key Countries

6. Global Empty Capsules Market Analysis and Forecast, by Type 

6.1. Introduction & Definition

6.1.1. Key Findings / Developments

6.2. Global Empty Capsules Market Value Forecast, by Type, 2017–2027

6.2.1. Gelatin Capsules Hard Gelatin Soft Gelatin

6.2.2. Non-Gelatin Capsules

6.3. Global Empty Capsules Market Attractiveness, by Type

7. Global Empty Capsules Market Analysis and Forecast, by Application

7.1. Introduction & Definition

7.1.1. Key Findings / Developments

7.2. Global Empty Capsules Market Value Forecast, by End-user, 2017–2027

7.2.1. Antibiotic & Antibacterial Drugs

7.2.2. Vitamin & Dietary Supplements

7.2.3. Antacid & Antiflatulent Preparations

7.2.4. Cardiovascular Therapy Drugs

7.2.5. Cough & Cold Drugs

7.2.6. Other Applications

7.3. Global Empty Capsules Market Attractiveness, by Application

8. Global Empty Capsules Market Analysis and Forecast, by Functionality 

8.1. Introduction & Definition

8.1.1. Key Findings / Developments

8.2. Global Empty Capsules Market Value Forecast, by Functionality, 2017–2027

8.2.1. Immediate-Release Capsules

8.2.2. Sustained-Release Capsules

8.2.3. Delayed-Release Capsules

8.3. Global Empty Capsules Market Attractiveness, by Functionality

9. Global Empty Capsules Market Analysis and Forecast, by End-user 

9.1. Introduction & Definition

9.1.1. Key Findings / Developments

9.2. Global Empty Capsules Market Value Forecast, by End-user, 2017–2027

9.2.1. Pharmaceutical Industry

9.2.2. Nutraceutical Industry

9.2.3. Other End-users

9.3. Global Empty Capsules Market Attractiveness, by End-user

10. Global Empty Capsules Market Analysis and Forecast, by Source 


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