London — Sugar and ethanol producer Cristalco is due to put its Reims plant in theChampagne region of France on maintenance in June, according to a companysource Monday.
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The plant, which produces ethanol both from beet and wheat, accounts foraround 70% of the company's ethanol production. The Reims plant has an annualethanol capacity of 150,000 cu m from beet processing and 200,000 cu m fromwheat processing.
Although this is planned maintenance the plant carries out every year at thistime, the source pointed to the bearish European ethanol market as anadditional factor encouraging a three-week rather than a two-week shutdown.
Following an extended period of negative margins for European producers, therehas been a lot of discussion in the market around extended maintenanceturnarounds or capacity cutbacks but with few confirmed so far.
However, sources say they expect that unless there is a shutdown from abigger producer, the bearishness in the market will be hard to overcome.
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