NPRA ’11: US bio-crude glycerine supply rises on higher production

29 March 2011 17:15  [Source: ICIS news]

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (ICIS)--US bio-crude glycerine supply is increasing because of an upswing in biodiesel production, glycerine buyers said Tuesday on the sidelines of the International Petrochemical Conference (IPC). 

“It got really tight in the first quarter, so we are glad to see more supply in the market,” a buyer noted.

Bio-crude glycerine is a by-product of biodiesel production, with widely limited supply dominating the past 18 months following the collapse of the diesel biofuel output in the US.

Reinstatement of the critical federal tax credit came late in December, after being anticipated much earlier in 2010. The late reinstatement of the credit pushed start-ups for most biodiesel producers into the second quarter.

As many as five biodiesel units are now sufficiently into start-up to put commercial quantities of material into the biofuel and the glycerine market, sources said.

Biodiesel companies with start-up operations include Cargill, Louis Dreyfus and REG.

All of the start-ups are soy-based biodiesel production, sources said. These producers also supply 80% vegetable-derived crude glycerine to the market from the biodiesel process.

Bio-crude glycerine was last assessed by ICIS at 11-14 cents/lb ($243-309/tonne, €173-219/tonne) FOB (Free on Board) midwest.

The 80% glycerol crude is sought by refiners to further process into the refined market.

US glycerine demand is increasing in a number of end-uses ranging from food and cosmetic applications to surfactant cleaning agents, according to buyers and sellers.

Hosted by the National Petrchemcial & Refiners Association (NPRA), the IPC continues through Tuesday.

($1= €0.71)

By: Judith Taylor
+1 713 525 2653

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