The emergence of the Omicron variant late last year was a setback. It showed we still have a way to go trying to eradicate this insidious disease. The vaccination programme has certainly been a godsend in halting its spread. But we can’t afford to be complacent.
Like most companies, the Norkem Group has had to adapt working practices to cope with the ‘work from home’ advise of governments. We are proud that we have been able to do this with great success whilst maintaining the high standards of service expected from our global customers.
Sincere thanks go to all of our staff members whatever their role in our various global offices; in the UK, the Netherlands, Spain, China, Australia, South Africa and Chile. Different rules and regulations across territories have demanded much flexibility. Everyone has worked tirelessly to make a success of challenging circumstances. It has been a fantastic team effort.
Despite all the challenges, we can look back on some notable successes in 2021. The past 12 months has seen our sales increase in the food, animal feed, oil, rubber, glass, leather and pharmaceutical industries, to name just a few. Major products such as compounds of Zinc, Copper, Manganese and Barium, as well as food preservatives, have all performed very well despite the high-profile supply shortages that have been making headlines.
In particular, we moved quickly to secure our supply chains from Europe as the Brexit transition period finished at the end of 2020. Despite all the disruption to logistics and import processes over the past 12 months, we’ve been able to keep products moving and stocks high.
This includes notable growth products like the dietary fibre and sweetener GOFOS, which has seen a surge in demand as food companies seek nutritional alternatives to sugar. Iodine and Iodine derivatives are another category that has been in high demand. Throughout 2021, we were able to keep supplying customers despite global scarcity.
In summer 2021, just to underline the strength of our business across regions, our Spanish branch underwent an exciting expansion.
Moving forward, work continues apace on expanding our product range in all areas. Immediate plans include adding further lines in Potassium Sorbate, Potassium Iodide, stains for the brick industry and a range of Chelates and Glycinates for use in animal feed.
All of this of course would not be possible without the continued support of our excellent suppliers and customers worldwide and to these we say a sincere ‘Thank you’ and look forward to many more years of cooperation.