Citribel: circular to the core

Over a century ago, Citribel found its origins, then known as P.O.T., as a result of a citric acid shortage during World War I. This shortage inspired the young Alphonse Cappuyns to investigate how citric acid could be produced without using lemons. After several years, Alphonse perfected the process, creating the citric acid we talk about today.

Now, more than a century later, Citribel's 'core business' has remained unchanged: creating citric acid without lemons. What did change over the years was the use of new raw materials in ever-optimising production processes. Citribel is now the only truly circular producer of citric acid, citrates and other by-products, thanks to natural surface fermentation of sugar molasses.

Sugar molasses, a by-product of sugar refineries, is the main raw material for their production process. The sugar molasses serves as a nutrient medium for the Citribel fungus, which produces citric acid and mycelium during the fermentation process. The citric acid is further purified and other by-products are also produced during this further processing.

Contributing to the well-being of people and the planet is central to Citribel. The company is constantly looking for new ways of recycling and upcycling. Their mission is clear: to strive for a cleaner, better and more sustainable world. To achieve this, they continue to look for ways to minimise their water and energy consumption, reduce their carbon emissions and avoid waste streams.