Ajinomoto Animal Nutrition Group Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Ajinomoto Co. Inc., will begin production of feed-grade tryptophan in North America, in addition to its existing operations in Europe.
With the addition of a new manufacturing line at its Eddyville, Iowa, location, Ajinomoto Group will stabilize profits in the animal nutrition business by strengthening the flexibility of its production system, which can switch product lines in response to changes in market prices.
In the feed-use amino acid market in North America, demand for tryptophan has been expanding rapidly over the past five years, the company said. This is due, in part, to changes in the type of raw materials for natural feed, including the use of corn-based dried distillers grains with solubles (DDGS), a byproduct of ethanol. In addition, with the success of Ajinomoto Group's proactive activities to create demand, steady market expansion is expected to continue.
Today, there are no manufacturers in North America producing feed-grade tryptophan, and this demand is currently being met by imports, Ajinomoto said.
According to the announcement, the Eddyville location — under the Ajinomoto Heartland Inc. banner — is scheduled to begin producing tryptophan in May 2017 and will produce 3,000 tons per year, depending on market conditions.
To begin production of feed-grade tryptophan with a strong competitive advantage at a small investment, Ajinomoto Group will introduce new production technology that further enhances its resource-saving fermentation technologies, which enable production with reduced fuel and raw materials, while sharing facilities with other existing product lines.
By simultaneously enhancing competitiveness with the introduction of new technology and strengthening the flexibility of its production system, Ajinomoto Group said it intends to maximize the capital efficiency and profits of its entire animal nutrition business in North America. Moreover, Ajinomoto Group will promote similar measures at each of its feed-grade amino acid production bases with the aim of securing stable profits by expanding specialty businesses and strengthening the competitiveness of commodity businesses, which is the medium-term strategy of the animal nutrition business.