German chemicals group BASF said this week that while on schedule with its expansion of vitamin E production, first announced in 2001, it was anticipating supply bottlenecks at its plant.
The company hopes to achieve a target annual capacity of 20,000 metric tons by mid-2004.
BASF said that modifications to the Ludwigshafen sitewill be carried out between October 2002 and April 2003, which will result in temporary production stops. In addition, necessary maintenance work will be carried out during the plants' outage.
During the modification phase, only a reduced production capacity will be available, said BASF, and despite efforts to build up stocks, the company stressed that it may not be possible to avoid a supply bottleneck.
With its portfolio of vitamins, BASF is among the leading suppliers to the animal nutrition industry as well as to the human nutrition and cosmetics industries.
BASF also produces chemicals, plastics, coatings systems, dispersions, agricultural products, fine chemicals as well as crude oil and natural gas. In 2001, the group had sales of €32.5 billion. It has more than 90,000 employees worldwide.