Segment Profile

In the Nutrition & Care segment – consisting of the Care Chemicals and Nutrition & Health divisions – we serve the growing and increasingly sophisticated demands for fast-moving consumer goods. Our customers include food and feed producers as well as the pharmaceutical, cosmetics, detergent and cleaner industries. We strive to expand our position as a leading provider of ingredients and solutions for consumer applications in the areas of nutrition, home and personal care. Our goal is to drive organic growth by focusing on emerging markets, new business models and sustainability trends in consumer markets, supported by targeted acquisitions.


Care Chemicals

Ingredients for the cosmetics, detergent and cleaner industries, agrochemical and technical applications

Nutrition & Health

Products for the food and feed industries, the flavor and fragrance industry, the pharmaceutical industry and the ethanol industry


Nutrition & Care – Sales (pie chart)
Factors influencing sales
Nutrition & Care – Factors influencing sales (bar chart)
Income from operations before special items

Million €

Nutrition & Care – Income from operations before special items (bar chart)

How we create value – an example

Sokalan® HP 20
Effective washing at low temperatures

Value for BASF

Average annual sales growth expected in Europe until 2022

around 6%

Value for the environment and society

Energy savings by reducing washing temperatures from 40°C to 20°C

> 50%

Sokalan® HP 20 is a high-performance ingredient for liquid detergent. It supports the trend toward machine washing at low temperatures with concentrated single-dose detergent pods. The BASF solution enables a significant reduction in anionic surfactant use. We expect Sokalan® HP 20 to generate average annual sales growth of around 6% in Europe until 2022 – twice as high as the market growth forecast for detergents in the European home care industry.

Sokalan® HP 20 delivers outstanding washing performance even at low temperatures, especially in combination with the protein-splitting enzyme Lavergy® Pro 104. By reducing washing temperatures from 40°C to 20°C, consumers can achieve energy savings of over 50%, lower their electricity costs and improve their carbon footprint.

Sokalan® HP 20 – Effective washing at low temperatures (Photo)


  • Organic growth driven by sustainable solutions for emerging markets, new business models and targeted acquisitions
  • Efficient production structures through strong integration of standard products into the Verbund

In the Nutrition & Care segment, we strive to expand our position as a leading provider of nutrition and care ingredients for consumer applications. We aim to enhance our technology capabilities in fields such as biotechnology and broaden our product portfolio with bio-based and biodegradable innovations. We focus on emerging markets, new business models and sustainability trends in consumer markets – supported by targeted acquisitions. A strong integration of various standard products such as surfactants and vitamins into the Verbund enables efficient production structures and cost leadership.

Consumer demands and the markets for our products are constantly changing. In the future, growth in these markets will be driven by natural and organic ingredients, traceability of ingredients, sustainable solutions and a growing consumer base. In addition, the trend toward individualization and local production supports new players and business models. To better meet these dynamic consumer demands, we aim to enhance and broaden our technology and product portfolio.

Innovation will be the key driver here, which is why we offer our customers tailor-made solutions and new functionalities via product and process innovation. Research platforms focusing on bio-based and biodegradable products have been established to complement our existing portfolio. We are working on innovative approaches beyond the existing purely chemical solutions with research and development in white biotech and fermentation technologies. Our enzymes unit, founded in 2018, centrally steers the research, technology and production of the enzyme businesses at BASF. In addition, this business unit markets enzymes directly. This allows us to focus and accelerate existing enzyme business in various industries.

In September 2019, BASF entered the market for natural flavors and fragrance ingredients with the acquisition of Isobionics, an innovation leader in biotechnology serving the global market for natural flavors and fragrances, and through a cooperation agreement with Conagen, Bedford, Massachusetts, a leader in biotechnology research.

For standard products such as vitamins or surfactants, we focus on backward integration in our Production Verbund’s value chains and cost leadership.

We are expanding our existing ibuprofen production capacities in Bishop, Texas. Our expanded vitamin A production facilities in Ludwigshafen, Germany, are scheduled to begin operation in early 2021. BASF will also expand its integrated complex for ethylene oxide and derivates such as surfactants at the Verbund site in Antwerp, Belgium.

By the end of 2021, BASF will increase its capacities for methane sulfonic acid by around 65% to better meet growing cross-industry demand and strengthen its position as a leading global producer. This involves an investment to construct a new methane sulfonic acid plant at the Ludwigshafen site in Germany. Methane sulfonic acid is a strong organic acid used in numerous applications ranging from chemical and biofuel synthesis to industrial cleaning and metal surface treatment in the electronics industry.

After expanding capacities in North America in 2018, BASF also expanded production capacities for alkyl polyglycosides (APGs) in China in 2019. APGs, which are used as surfactants in formulations for industries such as cosmetics, detergents and cleaners, are made completely from renewable raw materials and are biodegradable.