U.S. Thirsty for Citric Acid Imports

August 18, 2021

It’s peak demand season for Citric Acid, and the U.S. is short on supply.

There are only four Citric Acid producers in North America, which have the ability to supply 60 – 65% of our total need. The remaining 35-40% is, under normal circumstances, primarily met with imported product from Thailand.

Due to several factors, imported product has become increasingly difficult to get. One of the largest Thailand producers of Citric Acid that has declared Force Majeure on Citric Acid is citing the following reasons:

  1. The major shipping problems and astronomical container rates and fees currently affecting all overseas shipping, see our blog.
  2. Lack of feedstock materials (also due to the pandemic).
  3. Weaker exchange rates due to the unprecedented stimulus funding in the U.S.

Lack of imported product is the main reason for the shortness of supply. However, two U.S. producers are also having operational issues that are keeping them from supplying at full capacity, albeit temporarily. U.S. producers are also experiencing higher cost of raw materials and transportation.

At present, domestic producers are sold out weeks and months into the future, unable to fill the gap in the market and supply the shortfall. Prices are jumping up on a regular basis. How long will this last? One of the largest domestic producers has stated they do not foresee supply catching up with demand until 2023.

For your Citric Acid needs, reach out to a representative for current pricing and availability, or request a quote.