BASF is discontinuing its lysine business and will shut down its production facility in Gunsan, South Korea, by mid-2007 to concentrate on its non-amino acids business. According to a press release, rising raw material costs, overcapacities and a high dependency on exports has made the business no longer sustainable. The Gunsan site has a current capacity for lysine of approximately 100,000 metric tons per year. Lysine is the only amino acid in BASF’s nutrition portfolio.
The closure is part of the ongoing restructuring program of BASF’s fine chemicals business, initiated in January 2006, among other measures.
“In order to turn around our fine chemicals business, we are focusing on a more cyclically resilient product portfolio in nutrition as well as on growth areas in cosmetics and pharmaceuticals,” said Wolfgang Büchele, president of fine chemicals division, BASF. “By concentrating on the production and marketing of important non-amino acids such as vitamins, carotenoids, enzymes and organic acids, we are positioning ourselves as a reliable supplier of ingredients to the nutrition industry with a long-term commitment.”