The global demand for citric acid as a functional and bio-based ingredient in products ranging from food and beverages to detergents and industrial applications continues to grow. Consumer trends favouring healthier, biodegradable products are the underlying drivers. To meet future demands and continue to provide supplier security Jungbunzlauer has decided to initiate the construction of a new citric acid plant in Austria.
The new plant will deploy state-of-the-art technology with corn as carbohydrate feedstock for the fermentation process based on natural, non-genetically modified microorganisms. The citric acid will be extracted and purified without waste streams. Decades of process optimisation within the Jungbunzlauer Group will ensure both highly energy efficient production and minimal climate gas emission ratios.
Tom Knutzen, CEO, says: "This is indeed a large and exciting undertaking for Jungbunzlauer. It is testimony to our successful organic growth over the years based on the expansions of our plants in Western Europe and North America and ongoing, close collaboration with our customers, amongst whom are some of the biggest household names in consumer products."
The new plant is intended to be located along the river Danube in Lower Austria. This location will make it possible to leverage the competencies and resources at the current plant in Pernhofen, Austria, one of the largest and most efficient citric acid plants worldwide.
It is foreseen that, in the coming decades, the new plant will provide a platform for expansions within Jungbunzlauer’s bio-based product portfolio. The next step will be to conduct the environmental assessments required to obtain permits for the plant and, in parallel, complete the process of designing the detailed engineering of the plant and the associated infrastructure. It is expected that the plant will be operational within a few years.