EIA: Densified biomass fuel sales reach 880,000 tons in March

By Erin Voegele | July 11, 2022

The U.S. Energy Information Administration recently released data showing U.S. manufacturers produced approximately 920,000 tons of densified biomass fuel in March, with sales reaching 880,000 tons.

The data was released as part of the June edition of EIA’s Monthly Densified Biomass Fuels Report, which contains data for March. The EIA collected data from 80 operating manufacturers of densified biomass fuel to complete the report. The report does not include data on facilities with annual production capacities of less than 10,000 tons. Those smaller facilities report data annually rather than monthly.

The 80 manufacturers surveyed for March had a total combined production capacity of 13.26 million tons per year and collectively had the equivalent of 2,456 full-time employees.

Respondents purchased 1.72 million tons of raw biomass feedstock in March, produced 920,000 tons of densified biomass fuel and sold 880,000 tons of densified biomass fuel. Production included 140,682 tons of heating pellets and 779,796 tons of utility pellets.

Domestic sales of densified biomass fuel in March reached 70,535 tons at an average price of $195.95 per ton. Exports in March reached 818,138 tons at an average price of $183.84 per ton.

Inventories of premium/standard pellets increased to 249,049 tons in March, up from 183,751 tons in February. Inventories of utility pellets expanded to 347,147 tons in March, up from 299,000 tons in February.

Data gathered by the EIA shows that total U.S. densified biomass fuel capacity reached 13.35 million tons in March, with all of that capacity listed as currently operating or temporarily not in operation. Capacity included 1.97 million tons in the East, 10.54 million tons in the South, and 837,200 tons in the West.