Evonik Discusses Concentration of its Global Methionine Hubs:
29 October 2020 - On October 13, Evonik announced plans to cluster its DL-methionine production at three international hubs: Mobile, Alabama (the Americas hub), Antwerp, Belgium (Europe hub) and Singapore (Asia hub) – three sites earmarked as conducive to further opportunities for expansion and ready for cost efficient modular debottlenecking.
Evonik’s efficiency plan also includes the closing of its smallest DL-methionine plant located in Wesseling, Germany, by the end of Q1 2021. Evonik has been producing DL-methionine in Wesseling since 1967. Today the Wesseling plant has a capacity of 65,000 tonnes per year.
Although DL-methionine production in Wesseling will be stopped, Evonik will invest about EUR 25 million at the site in the upgrade of its methionine intermediate methyl mercaptan-propionaldehyde (MMP) plant with a view to safeguard long-term supply to Antwerp.
According to Evonik, the plan will lead to a better cost position for the firm through improved utilisation of capacity and with economies of scale and an enhanced ability to adapt to any market condition.
Further to the announcement, we were able to talk to Dr. Jan-Olaf Barth, Head of Product Line Efficient Nutrition at Evonik Animal Nutrition. Dr. Barth not only provided some background on the Wesseling site closure and the significance of the three hubs, but also his views of other methionine market developments Evonik is monitoring.
[Feedinfo] Mr. Barth, why is Evonik concentrating its methionine production in three hubs?
[Jan-Olaf Barth] Our animal nutrition business plays a central role in Evonik's Nutrition & Care growth division. We are aware of our responsibilities, which is why we are taking all appropriate steps to ensure our actions support security of supply in combination with the delivery of products and services. All three hubs are ideally positioned geographically to cater for the needs of growth markets and maintain proximity to our customers in all regions. Consolidating production at these plants, with cost leading positions, will ensure a reliable product supply, and offer the potential for cost-efficient debottlenecking in the coming years.
DL-methionine is, and will remain, one strong pillar of our animal nutrition business, together with our fermentative amino acids. Evonik is, and will remain, a leading manufacturer of DL-methionine and is ideally positioned to support the growth of the methionine market and its key customers. The asset set-up with three world-scale hubs enables us to implement smart debottlenecking at the time the market requires greater capacity at a competitive cost position. We are actively taking all efforts to strengthen our competitiveness to secure reliable supply to our customers. We believe this can only be achieved by taking advantage of economies of scale, leading cost position and technology.
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