Glycerine is a very versatile compound, used in medical and pharmaceutical applications, but also cosmetics, e-cigarettes and as anti-freeze. It is also an intermediate for the production of nitro-glycerine.
Glycerine can be made from vegetable oil, but it is also a by-product in the production of bio diesel from e.g. used cooking fat. However, until recently, the quality of this ‘waste’ glycerol was not good enough for further use in high value applications. This changed when the Dutch Glycerine Biorefinery in Delfzijl developed a process that yields high quality purified glycerine by removing fatty acids and salts.
The Indonesian company Musim Mas acquired the Dutch Glycerine Biorefinery in 2016, which is the largest such plant in the world, with a capacity of 200,000 tons of purified plant-based glycerine, which is exported worldwide.