“The new [Biolys] plant in Castro is our first amino acid plant in Latin America. We will target the [pig and poultry] markets in Latin America in general and in Brazil in particular,” said a spokesperson for the German group.
Evonik said the site was chosen because of its access to raw material supplies such as corn, its logistical connections, and its closeness to local markets.
The Biolys facility has been built at an industrial complex in Castro owned by Cargill.
Evonik is already running a cooperative manufacturing operation with the US agribusiness giant for the production of Biolys in Blair, Nebraska, which has an annual capacity of 280,000 metric tons following on from expansion work there in 2012.
The spokesperson told us a Biolys production facility with 100,000 Mt capacity, planned for construction in Volgodonsk in the Rostov region of Russia through a joint venture with the local Varshavsky group, is "still in its realization phase."
Last year, Evonik ploughed an additional half a billion euros into its innovation pipeline.
Some of that capital was invested in the monogastric feed additives side, and the group announced the launch of an L-valine product, ValAMINO last month.
That product, it said, represents the fifth essential amino acid in its portfolio for use in pig and poultry feeds, and will help to reduce the use of crude protein in the diets of those animals, without any loss in terms of growth performance.
Evonik claimed this will result in lower feed costs and conservation of natural resources in agricultural feed production, which in turn, it said, reduces land use, greenhouse gas emissions, and potential eutrophication and acidification.
The amino acid is said to have EU wide registration.
June also saw the German group announce that feed additive innovation has been earmarked as one of six R&D pillars that will contribute over €1bn in additional sales for the group by the year 2025.
Evonik said it is expanding its product portfolio accordingly to encompass healthy and sustainable animal nutrition.
The chemical company, which is active in over 100 countries, generated sales of around €13.5bn and an operating profit (adjusted EBITDA) of about €2.47bn in fiscal year 2015.
But, in March this year, it reported that adjusted core earnings could drop by as much as 19% in 2016, with the company blaming the weak outlook on falling prices for certain feed additives.