CJ to build amino acid plant in Iowa

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CJ to build amino acid plant in Iowa

CJ Cheiljedang Corp., Korea’s largest food maker, said yesterday that it will spend $300 million to build a lysine plant in the U.S. state of Iowa with an annual capacity of 100,000 tons.

The plant for producing lysine, an essential amino acid often added to animal feed, will be completed by the end of 2013, CJ Cheiljedang said, adding all its output will be sold in the United States.

The company said Cargill, the world’s largest trader of agricultural commodities, will provide the plant with starch sweetener, a key material for lysine.

The U.S. market reached 350,000 tons last year, the world’s third-largest after Europe’s 500,000 tons and China’s 450,000 tons, with U.S. and Japanese companies holding a commanding presence there.

“CJ Cheiljedang should tap the U.S. market in order to dominate the global biomarket,” CEO Kim Chul-ha said. “From the end of 2013, we will push ahead with aggressive business and marketing plans.”

The global lysine market stands at $3 billion with China’s GBT having the largest market share. Japan’s Ajinomoto and CJ Cheiljedang share the No. 2 spot, followed by ADM of the United States.

CJ Cheiljedang said it will capture the top status in the global lysine market once the Iowa plant goes on line at the end of 2013. The company plans to also dedicate a lysine plant in Shenyang, China, in the first half of next year.


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