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Bangladesh ammonia plants in crisis

BANGLADESH: Cold storage facilities and food processors in Bangladesh are in crisis after the countries largest ammonia supplier stopped vital deliveries for their refrigeration systems.

According to Bangladesh’s Daily Star, Jamuna Fertiliser Company, which meets 95% of the country’s demand for ammonia, stopped deliveries on August 21 after a team from the Bangladesh Anti-Corruption Commission found anomalies in the company’s gas distribution system.

Since then, Jamuna has stopped selling ammonia gas which, in addition to its use in refrigeration systems, is used to make fertiliser, household cleaning solutions, plastics, textiles, pesticides and dyes.

There is reported to be a monthly demand of 6,000 to 7,000 50kg cylinders in peak season and 3,000 to 3,500 cylinders in off-peak season.

Rezaul Haque, managing director of Modern Seafood Industries Ltd and a director of Bangladesh Frozen Foods Exporters Association, told the Daily Star that his factories require 30 to 40 cylinders of ammonia a month. The country has around 35 frozen foods exporters, each of which is said to require an eye-watering 15-20 cylinders of ammonia a month to survive.

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