Analysis of bioethanol and biodiesel supply chains in Mexico: Case Studies

José Alfredo Rosas Barajas, Andrés Aguilar Ortega, Ivete Cornejo Corona, Zenon Rizo Fernández, Saúl Edén Córdova de la Cruz, Luis Gerardo Ramos Frausto, José de Jesús Esparza Claudio


Introduction:The paper identified and analyzed the current state of the main actors involved in liquid biofuel supply chains in southeastern Mexico. The description of the production process of biodiesel, bioethanol and castor oil is included. Case A refers to a company that produces biodiesel from recycled vegetable oils, Case B refers to a company that uses molasses to produce anhydrous ethanol through a molecular sieve, Case C describes supply chain management, from the organization of farmers to the production process of castor oil and its marketing to industry, the INIFAP centers are working on the improvement of jatropha seed for collective use in potential growing areas.

Method:For field research, a team of subject matter specialists collected on-site data through on-site interviews and telephone interviews with suppliers, collectors, recycled vegetable oil processors and seed improvers involved in the supply chain. For schems designs, the Model Reference for Supply Chain Operations (SCOR) was used.

Results:Key elements involved in the biodiesel and bioethanol supply chains were identified in the case studies. Fifty-seven interviews were conducted, identifying the main elements involved in the supply chain. Eight interviews were conducted with bioethanol and biodiesel producers; twenty-one with suppliers of recycled vegetable oils; eleven with suppliers of agricultural inputs and seeds; and seventeen with oil collectors. The present work establishes that the biodiesel supply chain is not consolidated, the main reason being the lack of regulation of raw material prices. On the other hand, the bioethanol supply chain is more consolidated due to the level of international commercialization.

Discussion or Conclusion:According to fieldwork information, we found evidence of the absence of price regulation in raw materials and sub-products obtained in the biodiesel production process. The pricing of raw materials, products and sub-products dictates the feasibility of the supply chain. The case studies analysed in this paper have a high chance of entering the biofuels market on another national and international scale. However, the potential for biofuel production in Mexico is still emerging and far from being matched by the demand to be covered.


bioethanol; biodiesel; supply chains; vegetable oils


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