Ionones are cyclocitrylildene acetones with the molecular formula C13H20O. They are an important and versatile class of aroma chemicals. They exist in two forms: alpha and B forms. Ionones are generally found in the form of a colorless to pale-yellow colored liquid and have a molecular weight of 192.3.
Lemongrass oil is one of the most important essential oils being widely used for the isolation of citral. Citral is the starting material for the preparation of ionones. α-ionone is used in flavours, cosmetics and perfumes. β-ionone is used for the synthesis of vitamin A.
Expansion in the perfume industry across the world is expected to drive the demand for ionones during the next decade. Increasing demand for vitamin supplements due to the growing health awareness is also likely to drive the demand for ionones used in pharmaceuticals. Growth of the ionone market in the U.S. is projected to be moderate due to the growing health concerns regarding the use of synthetic aroma chemicals. In Latin America, Brazil and Mexico are anticipated to be important players in the ionone market owing to expansion of key end-use industries.
Key players operating in the ionone market are The Good Scents Company, Givaudan, L'Oreal S.A., Mubychem Group, International Flavors and Fragrances, SDV Suisse SA, and Takasago International Chemicals.