Following the customer’s inquiry in July 2018, USSEC provided technical assistance to the largest soybean crusher, Sodrugestvo Group, in Kaliningrad.
USSEC consultant Brent German of Blind Corner Solutions visited the soybean oil refinery and soy lecithin production site of the company, escorted by local USSEC consultant Maria Domoroshchenkova.
Sodrugestvo has a refinery plant with a capacity to produce 400 metric tons (MT)/day of refined, bleached, and deodorized (RBD) soybean oil with a total annual output of up to 130 thousand metric tons (TMT). The section for liquid lecithin production has a capacity of 10 MT/day with a total annual output of 2,400 MT.
At the onsite seminar, Mr. German presented “Refinery Benchmarks.” The seminar was attended about 30 people and was followed by a lively discussion.
The seminar was followed by visits to a refinery plant and lecithin installation, plus further roundtable discussions, notably regarding the oil refining and lecithin production parameters.
During the customer visit, the importance of using high quality soybeans as a raw material for the production of high quality oil and lecithin was emphasized. It was clearly demonstrated that U.S. Soy has reliable and sustainable quality characteristics that contribute to lower oil losses during refining and to a higher quality of finished oil.
Education of local customers on the modern practice of processing of soybeans and soybean oil is important for further development of the soy market in Russia. Providing science-based information to local customers on the benefits of U.S. soybeans as a reliable and sustainable raw material is helpful for building demand for U.S. soybeans.
Vitaly Smirnov, quality director at Sodrugestvo, said that after lifting a temporary suspension for import of U.S. soybeans to Russia, the annual demand of the company for U.S. soybeans could be in the range of 0.5 to 1 million MT.