Chemtura Boosts Grease Capacity


Chemtura said it will increase calcium sulfonate grease production capacity 40 percent by years end at its West Hill, Canada, facility in response to growing demand.

Chemturas calcium sulfonate grease is used in wet, high-load, high temperature applications in a variety of industries, including marine, steel, paper, mining, construction and food.

The capacity increase at the facility in Ontario involves adding equipment, rather than a debottlenecking process, according to Kirk Schlup, Chemturas global market manager for detergents and greases.

Schlup said the company has seen more sophisticated users migrating to its grease chemistry. At a macro scale, by and large, we operate in the premium grease segment, he explained. Then the next segment down is very large, certainly compared to the one were operating in. So just a one percent migration from the lower level stuff up to the premium level results in a big boost for someone like us. What were finding is people are just appreciating the value of the technology.

He noted most of the demand is from North America and Europe. Were seeing increases in automotive, steel and marine, Schlup said. But I think the bump were seeing has more to do with people upgrading the grease they use, rather than there being a big underlying growth in demand.

Schlup said Chemtura is also seeing a big demand increase in the food-grade segment.

Again, I dont think thats so much because of underlying demand increase, but one, because of growing appreciation that food-grade lubricants are needed in more places, he continued, and historically, people have had to compromise on performance to get a food-grade lubricant, and they dont, with our technology. So thats also driving a pickup in demand.

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