Hydrochloric acid dearth could affect citrus industry
Farmer's Weekly|May 28, 2021
The shortage of hydrochloric acid in South Africa could affect the citrus industry, as it is used in packhouses for cleaning.
Lindi Botha

South Africa is experiencing a shortage of hydrochloric acid (HCl), a crucially important chemical used in citrus packhouses. Although alternative acids are available, packhouses need to exercise caution when selecting a replacement.

According to Wilma du Plooy, post-harvest disease programme coordinator at Citrus Research International, the HCl shortage was due mainly to South African plant failures or shutdowns, which were likely to continue for at least several months. A small amount of HCl was manufactured by the local timber industry, with all excess being directed to the gold mining sector.

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