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Wilmar and Elevance Start Shipping from Indonesia

August 2, 2013

INDONESIA: Wilmar International  and Elevance Renewable Sciences have begun shipping commercial products, including novel specialty chemicals, to customers from their first joint venture biorefinery, located in Gresik, Indonesia. The biorefinery is the first based on Elevance’s proprietary metathesis technology.

“We are pleased to have successfully and safely completed construction, commissioning and startup, allowing us to commercially supply partners with better-performing, cost-competitive renewable alternatives to petrochemicals across multiple industries,” said Elevance CEO K’Lynne Johnson. 

The biorefinery will initially operate using palm oil, but it is capable of running on multiple renewable oil feedstocks, including mustard, soybean and, when they become commercially available, jatropha or algal oils. The facility produces novel specialty chemicals, including multifunctional esters such as 9-decenoic methyl ester, a unique distribution of bio-based alpha and internal olefins including decene and a premium mixture of oleochemicals. It has a capacity of 180kMT (approximately 400 million pounds) with the ability to expand up to 360kMT (approximately 800 million pounds) of products.

“The technology, now proven on a global scale, is driving positive changes in the chemical industry by delivering novel products that improve performance and reduce environmental impact compared to alternates,” said Rahul Kale, Wilmar’s head of biofuels and oleochemicals.

The specialty chemicals, olefins and oleochemicals will be used in personal care products, detergents and cleaners, and other products. These molecules combine the functional attributes of an olefin, typical of petrochemicals, and a monofunctional ester or acid, typical of bio-based oleochemicals, into a single molecule, the company said.

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