Wood-based panels - Explosion in methanol and glue costs

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Prices for glue have risen dramatically in recent weeks, as a result of an explosion in the cost of methanol. Methanol is the main ingredient in glue, and prices for this commodity have recently risen by 100 percent. Wood-based panel manufacturer Glunz is monitoring the situation closely, and is currently assessing whether it will have to pass on these increased costs and adjust its own prices.

The root cause of the increased methanol prices is twofold: capacity outages at the world’s largest producers have coincided with ongoing high demand. Recently, Norwegian-based Statoil, Europe’s largest supplier of methanol, was forced to shut down its plant because of technical difficulties beyond its control and temporarily declared a state of force majeure freeing it from its contractual obligations. Methanex, the Canadian-based global market leader, had to cut its output due to problems with the gas supply to its factories in Chile. Other suppliers too, including Millennium in the USA, Zagros in Iran and Napetko in Libya, are also experiencing production problems, and this shortfall in supply has come in a summer when demand has been exceptionally high.

“The sudden increase over the last few weeks in the price of methanol – and as a result, glue – could not have been foreseen. We are as surprised as our suppliers by market events,” says Bernoid Foucart, Global Purchasing Director of Sonae Indústria, the Portuguese parent company of Glunz.
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