Oleon brings you a natural chemistry. Our specialty lies in converting natural fats and oils into a wide range of oleochemical products, such as fatty acids, glycerine, esters, dimers, technical oils, specialty oleochemicals and biodiesel. As a leading producer of oleochemicals made from renewable raw materials, our products combine high performance with ready biodegradability.
At Oleon, we believe that a natural chemistry entails much more than just the production of our natural chemicals. That is why we attach great importance to all the people who matter to us. We invest in our employees, commit to long-term relationships with our clients, communicate openly with our suppliers and respect our neighbors. We believe that all these factors contribute to a natural chemistry with all our stakeholders, including the wider community in which we do business.
The head office of Oleon is located in Ertvelde near Ghent (Belgium). We have two production sites in Belgium (Ertvelde and Oelegem), one in Germany (Emmerich), one in Compiègne (France) and one in Port Klang (Malaysia). Because of the favorable location of our plants, various transportation possibilities across land and sea are at our disposal: Oleon buys raw materials from all over the world and its end products are exported to more than 100 countries.
Oleon starts from renewable raw materials. Our key technology is the chemistry of molecules derived from vegetable oils and animal fats. They are extracted from renewable resources from all over the world.
Oleon’s raw materials are split up into their basic components which, after conversion or purification, are recombined with each other, or with other molecules. Fats and oils are one of nature’s most important molecules consisting of glycerine and three fatty acid chains.
Oleon’s base oleochemical production uses two processes to split the raw materials: hydrolysis and methanolysis.
In a hydrolysis tower, water, at a pressure of 55bar and a temperature of 250 °C, ensures that the raw material is split into crude fatty acids and glycerine. The crude fatty acids are later purified by distillation. Further possible treatment include hydrogenation, which is saturation by using hydrogen; crystallisation, which is the separation into solid (stearic-fraction); and liquid (oleic-fraction) fatty acids, or topping which is the separation of the shorter from the longer chain fatty acids.
Methanolysis is a process comparable to hydrolysis, but in which water is replaced by methanol. The methyl esters obtained are converted into fatty alcohols, or sold as such in the market.
Our derivatives production uses to a great extent the base oleochemicals produced in our different plants for the conversion into natural esters. Esters are compounds of acids and alcohols, which can be produced through two processes: direct and trans-esterification. OLEON’s fatty acids, fatty alcohols and glycerine are the most important raw materials for over 200 natural esters which are produced in accordance to highly application-orientated standards. They are delivered to the customer either in liquid form in drums, tankers or ships, or in solid form as powder or flakes in bags.
Oleon’s natural chemistry is everywhere. We offer our oleochemical building blocks and ingredients in a large variety of markets such as: Crop protection, Cosmetics, Industrial Ingredients, Lubricants, Nutrition, Oilfield, Coatings, Detergents and many more. The main trade name of our products is Radia®. Radia® oleochemicals are used in a wide range of industries as raw materials, ingredients or additives enhancing the properties of the end product. These oleochemicals are used for their functional properties such as chemical reactivity, lubricity, stabilization of emulsions, etc.
We as a company are driven by customer intimacy, innovation and sustainability. We provide our customers worldwide with high performance solutions based on renewable raw materials. That's what Oleon's natural chemistry is all about.
Moussa Naciri - CEO Oleon