30 April 2001 00:00 [Source: ICB Americas]Kemira plans to increase its formic acid capacity by 30 percent, partly in response to growing demand for the chemical in the European animal feed sector.
The company will be investing á17 million ($15 million) on a 20,000 ton-per-year expansion of its 60,000 ton-per-year unit at Oulu, Finland. Kemira is the second largest supplier worldwide of formic acid.
"Demand for formic acid in animal feed is rising by 10 percent annually in Europe against a general growth rate for the chemical of 3 to 4 percent," says Ilkka Pollari, business unit manager at Kemira. "Formic acid derivatives are replacing antibiotics in animal feed because of European restrictions on the use of antibiotics."
Kemira also sees growth opportunities for formic acid in the making of silage in Russia and elsewhere in Eastern Europe for dairy cattle. "There is going to be a big rise in production in milk and milk products in these areas," says Mr. Pollari.
In nitrogen fertilizers, Kemira is relocating a closed nitric acid plant at Rozenburg, the Netherlands, to Tertre, Belgium, where it will be rebuilt by the summer of next year to replace older capacity on the site which will be shut down.
The company is not disclosing the amount of nitric acid capacity being permanently closed but says that the fertilizer granulation capacity at Tertre would not be affected.
At Pernis, the Netherlands, where Kemira has recently closed fertilizer production and recycling capacity, the company has sold its part of the site to a waste recycling operation.
Kemira, which is still seeking a partner in nitrogen fertilizers, is also strengthening the services side of its fertilizer business by providing more advice to farmers on the more efficient use of its products.
Meanwhile Kemira will invest á1.9 million on the revamping of a fine chemicals plant at Kokkola, Finland, to bring it up to current good manufacturing practice (cGMP) standards for the making of pharmaceutical intermediates.
For the latest chemical news, data and analysis that directly impacts your business sign up for a free trial to ICIS news - the breaking online news service for the global chemical industry.
Get the facts and analysis behind the headlines from our market leading weekly magazine: sign up to a free trial to ICIS Chemical Business.