Food-grade lubricants an attractive market for Group V base oils

26 June 2014 09:49 Source:ICIS News

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Food-grade lubricants is becoming an attractive market for Group V base oils, industry sources said at the sidelines of the eighth ICIS Asian base oils and lubricants conference on Thursday.

The awareness of food-grade lubricants has grown significantly in the past 10 years and will continue to grow steadily in the future, according to participants at the annual conference held in Singapore on 24-26 June.

As more and more countries regulate lubricants with food contact actively, the demand for Group V base oils is expected to rise in tandem. Group V base oils comprise primarily of fatty acids and esters that are non-toxic, bio-degradable and suitable for human consumption, a market source said.

“Although the [food-grade lubricants] market is still premature for now, we expect growth throughout the next few years,” the source added.

Developed countries in the EU and the US are increasingly focusing on food safety, with the governments imposing laws to regulate food-processing procedures, the same source said.

With the increase in the usage of food-grade lubricants in the future, the market for Group V base oils is poised to grow, the source said.

Group V base oils includes silicone, phosphate ester, polyalkylene glycol (PAG), polyolester and biolubes among others. These base oils are at times mixed with other base stocks to enhance their properties when used in automotive applications.

Currently, the production of Group V base oils is a specialty business, unlike the Group I, II and III grades which are commodity products and widely traded.

By Jasmine Khoo & Veena Pathare