The German chemical group announced yesterday that, with immediate effect, the price of its animal-grade vitamin is now $20.50/kg (€16.40/kg) on a CIF sea basis.
A spokesperson told NutraIngredients.com that the costs of raw materials used in the fermentation process has increased significantly over a sustained period of time. Since the food-grade vitamin is produced in the same way, this is also likely to be affected.
For humans, vitamin B2 (also known as riboflavin) is a vital nutrient that plays a role in energy production, production of red blood cells, antibody production, regulation of thyroid activity, and other functions.
Since it is water soluble, B2 cannot be stored by the body, which means that resources must be replenished each day. Food sources include organ meats, milk, yeast, cheese, oily fish, eggs and dark green leafy vegetables. It is an ingredient in a wide range of supplement products and fortified foods, including breakfast cereals.
This is the second price increase from BASF Fine Chemicals in as many weeks. It recently announced an 11 per cent increase in the cost of its feed grade vitamin E due to raw material costs - again with food grade increases likely to follow.
The spokesperson said that there is no relation between the raw materials used for vitamin E and vitamin B2. She was not able to give a prognosis as to the future price increased across BASF's portfolio, which includes vitamins, carotenoids, enzymes and organic acids, active pharmaceutical ingredients and intermediates, aroma chemicals, polymers and UV filters.
But when reporting its Q2 results in August, BASF said that, in general, record raw material costs have increased pressure on margins and that price increases to reflect rising costs will be necessary in the future.
In 2005, the Fine Chemicals division posted sales of € 1.73 billion.