Global Q1 VLSFO Off-Spec Jumps to One-Year High: Verifuel

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Thursday April 25, 2024

The share of VLSFO samples found to be off-specification jumped to a one-year high in Q1, according to Bureau Veritas bunker monitoring unit Verifuel.

About 1.7% of the VLSFO samples analysed by Verifuel in the first quarter of 2024 were found to be off-specification, the company told Ship & Bunker on Thursday. The figure was up from 1.5% in Q4 but down from 2.2% in Q1 2023.

Within Q1 the off-spec rate was at its highest in February, at 2.0%, with the level in January and March reaching 1.7% and 1.3%, respectively.

Quality problems may have risen somewhat compared with last year's average with a rising bunker price delivering more incentive for blenders to compromise on quality to deliver lower prices.

The global average viscosity of all VLSFO samples the company analysed was 164 cSt in Q1, up from 153 cSt in the same period a year earlier. Average density rose to 947.5 kg/m3 from 942.2 kg/m3 a year earlier.

Of the HSFO samples the company handled, the Q1 off-spec rate was 3.6%, up from 2.2% a year earlier and the highest rate since at least Q2 2022. The Q1 off-spec rate for MGO was 4.0%, up from 3.1% a year earlier and the most since at least Q1 2022.