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[Nov. 6th, 2008|07:11 pm]
Lab Rats


So, world-wide Acetonitrile shortage. I got to spend today calling every vendor I could think of to see if anyone could help my thirsty HPLC. Some places are so far behind they won't even sell it on backorder.


Anyone know how that happened? One sales rep told me a couple of stories, but she had no idea how true they were.

[User Picture]From: thatshanekid
2008-11-21 04:42 am (UTC)
haven't posted on here in forever, but came across this on google.

fyi - the shortage is far from over. i work for a company that distributes acn. Fisher and VWR are on allocation basis, and B&J, MBI, and EMD have all declared force majeure. Sigma Aldrich is rumored to have tripled their list price, but hasn't gone to allocation.

factors: fisher did not have a fire, but a major plant did. the olympics in china halted production. the slow down of the auto industry (as ACN is a byproduct of making car bumpers). hurricane season shut down a plant on the gulf coast. and in december a leading supplier of the raw material used to make ACN will shut down for scheduled maintenance (about 3 weeks) - so things will get worse before they get any better. perfect storm for a shortage.

consider me a reliable source...
(Reply) (Thread)
From: (Anonymous)
2008-12-08 01:22 pm (UTC)

ACN Alocation


ACN allocation is in my google alerts... that's because I live and breath this everyday in industry... That's how I found you. Yes, the olympics and the hurricanes all contributed, but what killing us now is the economy. ACN is a byproduct of Acrylonitrile, which is used to make carpets, carbumpers, and luggage. Since the economy has slowed down (I call it the bumper slump), no one is making Acrylonitrile, so we are experiencing a feedstock issue.

Alot of folks ask "Why can't you just make ACN?" Well, the only way to synthesis it is quite expensive using petro based products... And when you make it the old fashioned way via Acrylonitrile, only 2% of the goo is ACN... So you have to make a bunch of Acrylonitrile to get a little ACN.

Right now, suppliers like Fisher,Sigma, EMD, MBI, etc.. are buying from boutique suppliers, and the boutique suppliers are gouging. And to add insult to injury , not only is it 4x more expensive, but it's also dirtier... So suppliers have to work harder to clean it up.

Also keep in mind that a lot of Pharma manufacturing has moved to Asia... That means a lot of ACN is staying in Asia instead of being shipped to the US.

This is going to be ugly for a while. At the very least until July. My best advice to you is to change your HPLC method...
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