As details emerged that a lack of CO2 may be threatening UK meat production, specifically within the poultry sector, gasworld reached out to several industrial gas suppliers, all of whom have declined to comment further.
Speaking exclusively to gasworld TV on the webinar CO2: Use It, Don’t Lose It, and Monitor, Part 2, Christopher Carson – Founder and Principal Director at Carbonic Solutions – confirmed there has been a shortage in supply and that Carbonic Solutions is currently receiving multiple calls every day from companies attempting to acquire any excess CO2.
When asked by gasworld Global Managing Editor Rob Cockerill about the rumoured CO2 supply tightening, Carson emphasised the scale of the shortage, saying, “It has been extremely busy for about the last month. My phone’s ringing off the wall even as we sit here.”
“In the UK, one of the largest sources, Billingham, has gone down and it’s been down for over a month now and that’s creating shortages in the market.”
Is there another CO2 shortage in the UK?
He also stated that some customers that rely on CO2 to keep their plants running are being dried out by their suppliers, resulting in his company receiving numerous inquiries for the gas.
Despite being a self-admitted ’very small player’ with just a couple percent market share, Carson said that Carbonic Solutions’ supply chain is doing well, and the company is trying its best to help those struggling with supply.
He continued, “We have our struggles just like everybody else, but we’ve been able to really try to help the customers in our region that we can and help them keep their plants running.”
Speaking about the relatively unstable nature of the UK’s CO2 market, Carson said that the UK remains a volatile market with an equally volatile supply and demand balance. This balance could be set to correct itself in the very near future, as he thinks that the shortage, ongoing for about five weeks, is going to be over in a ’couple of weeks’.
When asked whether the shortage is limited to the UK or if it’s going further afield, he replied, “Right now, it’s primarily the UK and the Republic of Ireland. That’s where it’s centred around, the rest of Europe seems to have done pretty well.”
“Let’s hope that it doesn’t go any further, absolutely.”
With future developments on the horizon, gasworld is keeping a close eye on the situation. To watch the full webinar, visit the on-demand series at www.gasworld.tv.