Amino Acid Trade Resumes, Vitamin C Prices Rise

“Producers began to pass on higher input prices and large factories stopped selling locally during the fourth quarter.

“Meanwhile, Dl-Methionine is trading sideways with upside risk since Evonik confirmed [during its quarterly investor call on November 3] that one of the production facilities in Antwerp would be down for two to three weeks ”, said Stefan Schmidinger, partner, Kemiex.

A spokesperson for Evonik told FeedNavigator today that its MetAMINO factory in Antwerp is up and running.

In terms of the development of lysine, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) recently confirmed the safety of a strain used by CJ CheilJedang, and the clearance required for import approval into the EU by the European Commission is expected within 5 to 12 weeks, reported the Swiss diet. and food additives information and trade platform.

Rising Vitamin C Prices

“For vitamins, we were unable to observe a major trend reversal. The big exception is vitamin C or ascorbic acid ”, Schmidinger told us.

Vitamin C is used for a variety of applications in animal feed, human nutrition, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and others. In value, it makes up about 5% of all vitamins used in animal feed and 50% in food, Kemiex noted.

“Four weeks ago, following a trade show in China, some factories stopped offering, putting pressure on prices outside China while spot prices in Europe were still comfortable. Currently, bulls and bears are in the midst of their speculative games – and prices are rising, ” said the market specialist.

Some neighborhoods predict that vitamin C prices could reach US $ 7-11 in the coming weeks or months, Kemiex said.

“The bulls argue that the reduction in supply, in part linked to lower capacity utilization during the next heating season, as well as increased demand for dietary supplements against COVID-19, will increase the price. However, bears would say regional stocks should be comfortably high, as 2020 saw large and above-average vitamin C imports in the US and Europe, ” Schmidinger added.

Vitamin C import trends

Between 2015 and 2019, global vitamin C imports experienced growth rates of 4% per year with the United States, Germany and the Netherlands at 2%, while Japan, Brazil, the Spain, UK, Italy and others were 5-8% per year, Kemiex reports. .

Currency, transport costs

Currency movements are also impacting global trade in food additives, with the US dollar weakening 7.3% against the Chinese yuan and 8.5% against the euro in the past six months. , noted Kemiex.

At the same time, he pointed out that freight rates from Asia remain high as container shortages continue, demand from other sectors remains high, and carriers report full utilization.

Pending projects

The heating season is approaching, and the provinces of Hebei, Jiangxi and others in China recently announced air pollution prevention and control measures in accordance with the Chinese government’s “blue sky” policy introduced a few years ago. years, Kemiex said. “Like every year, several production plants will operate at lower capacity and focus on liquidating stocks.”

In other China-related developments, Kemiex reports that authorities ordered Huazhong Pharmaceutical to shut down production of vitamin B1, B6, Zhejiang Garden ordered a new vitamin project in Jinxi Science and Technology Park, while Jiangxi Kexing Pharmaceutical is scheduled to start biotin and carotenoid test production in January 2021, and Xinfa Pharmaceutical has started aldehyde production, while announcing that it will speed up several vitamin projects.

Beyond China, the German chemicals group BASF also recently announced a price increase for its formic acid and propionic acid products.

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