Natural rubber, also called by other names of India rubber, latex, Amazonian rubber, gaucho or caoutchouc, as initially produced, consists of polymers of the organic compound isoprene, with minor impurities of other organic compounds, plus water. Thailand and Indonesia are two of the leading rubber producers. Natural rubber is used extensively in many applications and products, either alone or in combination with other materials. In most of its useful forms, it has a large stretch ratio and high resilience, and is extremely waterproof Latex is the polymer cis-1,4-polyisoprene – with a molecular weight of 100,000 to 1,000,000 daltons.
Natural rubber is an elastomeric and a thermoplastic. Once the rubber is vulcanized, it is a thermos. Most rubber in everyday use is vulcanized to a point where it shares properties of both; i.e., if it is heated and cooled, it is degraded but not destroyed.
India's natural rubber imports in 2018/19 surged to a record high as production dropped amid a rise in consumption, the state-run Rubber Board said on May 3. The country's production fell 7.5 percent from a year ago to 642,000 tones, while consumption jumped 9 percent to a record 1.21 million tones, the board said.
The world production of rubber was considered to be very unstable during the last few years. Comparatively, India's production of rubber is consistent at the rate of 6% per annum. The Rubber industry in India is growing with its roots deeper. India is the 3rd largest consumer, while the largest producer of natural rubber in the world. The Rubber Board has received approval to encourage block rubber production, which is expected to mark a new channel for rubber processing in the domestic sector.