Soap noodles Prices, markets & analysis
If you buy or sell Soap noodles or related products, you need up-to-date global pricing data and the background information to help you understand it.
Our network of price reporters across Asia, Europe and the US enables us to deliver this. We publish their insights in our comprehensive daily and weekly price reports, plus we offer the news and analysis you need to put pricing information into context.
Soap Noodles Overview Transcript
Soap noodles are produced from the saponificatoin of oil, the neutralisation of fatty acids. In Asia the saponification of fatty methyl esters is important, especially in Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, India and China.
The common feedstocks used are palm oil, palm kernel oil and coconut oil. A typical blend would be an 80:20 standard, comprising 80% palm oil and 20% palm kernel oil or coconut oil. While there are other blends available in the market 80:20 is generally recognised by the industry as being the optimum grade. It has a good balance of lather, rate of wear, cleaning ability and hardness.
In Asia prices are usually driven by movements in the feedstock sectors.
The market is very active during the traditional peak summer months but enters a lull in the winter. Spot deals are usually for smaller packages, under 1000 metric tonnes, whereas larger deals are usually concluded on a quarterly contact basis.
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Soap noodles: Market overview
Prices of standard blend soap noodles has been highly correlated with trends in key feedstock crude palm oil (CPO) and crude palm kernel oil (CPKO) prices, as feedstock accounts for a large percentage of soap noodles production costs.
Supply from southeast Asia remains healthy despite consumption in key demand markets such as southeast Asia, Africa and Middle East affected by seasonal factors such as monsoon and festive celebrations during the quarter.
India and China has been growing to become more self-sufficient. In China, demand for standard-blend soap noodles has weakened because of strong competition from alternative cheaper blends of soap noodles. In India, however, demand has grown over the years, but imports were made less favourable because of the weakening of the Indian rupee and more competitively priced domestic produce.
The outlook for the next quarter will largely depend on trends in upstream feedstock prices and demand.
Updated to mid-August 2013
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About Soap noodles
Soap noodles are the sodium salt of fatty acids from oils or fats of both animal and vegetable origin. Soap noodles are used as the main ingredient in the production of soap bars.
A typical blend would be the 80/20 standard comprising of 80% palm oil and 20% palm kernel oil or coconut oil. While there are other blends available in the market such as 70:30, 60:40 and 90:10.
In southeast Asia, soap noodles are mainly made from palm oil blended with either coconut oil or palm kernel oil.
In China, soap noodles are made from animal fats (tallow), palm oil or a blend of both.
In India, soap noodles are made from palm fatty acid distillate and palm stearin.