No Growth for Grease

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Total reported worldwide grease production was 1.61 billion pounds (726 million kilograms) in 2002, unchanged from 2001, according to the latest Grease Production Survey from the National Lubricating Grease Institute.

Lithium soap greases accounted for 70 percent of global production, calcium soap greases accounted for 13 percent, aluminum soap greases for 5 percent, polyurea greases for almost 5 percent, greases with organophilic clay thickeners for 3 percent, and other greases for the remaining 4 percent.

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North American grease production totaled 499 million pounds in 2002. For the North American companies reporting in both years, total reported grease production declined 1.1 percent from 2001 to 2002.

European grease production totaled 433 million pounds in 2002. For the European companies reporting in both years, total reported grease production increased 4 percent from 2001 to 2002.

Asia, including Japan, China, India, and Southeast Asian countries, produced 35 percent of the worlds total grease supply in 2002. North America produced 31 percent; Europe produced 27 percent; the Caribbean, Central and South America together produced 4 percent; and Africa and the Middle East produced 3 percent.

Copies of the 20-page NLGI Grease Production Survey Report for 2002, 2001, 2000 and 1999 are available for $25 to NLGI members and $40 to nonmembers. NLGI, 4635 Wyandotte St., Kansas City, MO 64112, USA. Web: www.nlgi.org.