With 2018 bringing the challenge of plastic overuse to light, 2019 is predicted to bring key changes to the UK’s chemical industry.

Changes to the choice of which chemicals to manufacture and research into how to streamline the manufacturing process are set to dominate chemical manufacturing in 2019.

As Leeds Trailers partners with bespoke tank trailers Vocol to transport hazardous goods across the UK, we’ve taken a closer look at the chemical manufacturing trends of 2019.


“Green Chemicals”

Green chemicals or bio-based chemicals are produced from crops or organic waste, fats and oils, as well as sugar and starch.

The trend to use them as biodegradable alternatives in the manufacturing industry is growing.

Here are some examples of green chemicals and how they can be used in the UK’s manufacturing industry.


Lactic acid can be produced by fermenting sugar or starch.

It is used for biodegradable polyesters and could replace plastics used in packaging, as well as plastics used for car parts and fabrics.

The biodegradable polyesters can also be used to create medical screws that remain in the body after surgery.


Itaconic acid can replace petroleum-based acrylic acids that are used to create personal care products like cleansing pads or nappies.

It also replaces unsaturated polyester resins used for boat and car parts or pipes and gratings.


2,5-Furandicarboxylic acid (FDCA) is an alternative to the non-biodegradable chemical PET that is used in food packaging and for plastic bottles.

With further development in how to produce it, FDCA could be used for electronics, car parts and carpets.


Levulinic acid is known as a green solvent. It can be used to create skin creams, fragrances and environmentally friendly weed killers. T

his acid can further be used in the pharmaceutical industry to create photosensitizers – a drug to treat cancer.


Glucaric acid can be used to make environmentally friendly detergents.

It could replace the existing detergents that are phosphate based and not good for the environment.


The UK battery industry

High performance batteries or electric car batteries are due to change the UK chemical industry in 2019.

A report from the Warwick Manufacturing Group said the UK chemical industry could earn £2.7 bn per year if electric car batteries are produced in the UK. Most electric car batteries are currently imported from Asia.

The first UK based electric car battery manufacturer Hyperbat Limited launched in September 2018 and is based in Coventry.

It’s the beginning of the UK’s high performance battery industry.


New generation of manufacturing medicine

The Medicine Manufacturing Innovation Centre (MMIC) is set to lead the way in manufacturing medicine in the UK by providing quicker and safer manufacturing processes.

The MMIC will be based in Renfrewshire, Scotland, and aims to improve how quickly new medicines get to patients.

The Scottish government predicts the medicine manufacturing industry will contribute 90% to Scotland’s Economy by 2025.


The growth of algae biofuels ?

2019 could be the year of the algae. Research into alternatives to fossil fuels has increased, and algae-based biofuels have the potential of changing the chemical and transport industry in 2019.

Current biofuels are made from ethanol extracted from corn or sugarcane. ExxonMobil is researching alternatives and believes that algae could become the key component to future biofuels. While algae are easy to grow, the process of manufacturing them into biofuel and biodiesel hasn’t been finalised.

The UK’s chemical manufacturing industry will see key changes in 2019 focused on sustainable and environmentally friendly alternatives.

The transport of chemicals requires specialist trailers.

Leeds Trailers is partners with specialist tank trailer manufacturers, Vocol.

If you require tank trailers to transport chemicals in the UK, call our team on 01924 420 646 today to discuss your transport requirements.


For different but nevertheless bespoke transport jobs, we offer specialist trailer hire.

To enquire about the extendable trailer and Doll trailer hire fleet, call our team or leave a message in the contact form of the website.