Coral Gas introduces a molecular marker to combat illicit dilution



Authentix
07/22/2019

A case study for marking technology and illegal adulteration

See also: Fuel Quality Industry Report: Downstream Fuel Manipulation – The Threats That Could Cost You

Liquified petroleum gas (LPG) is a Greek success story. In recent years, Greek consumers have increasingly switched to LPG, using it both as an automotive fuel and a heating fuel, due to its lower price compared to gasoline or oil. In fact, official Greek sales of LPG reached 215,000 metric tons last year, up from just 4,200 tons in 2009.

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Coral Gas, Greece, has played a major part in that success. Formerly known as Shell Gas S.A., Coral Gas S.A. operates as a subsidiary of Motor Oil Hellas Corinth Refineries SA.

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Through its four plants in Athens, Thessaloniki, Ioannina and Crete, Coral Gas has helped make LPG a big part of everyday life in Greece.

The Attack

But with success came a significant problem. Coral Gas was experiencing product quality problems due to dilution. It appeared that LPG that did not originate from the fuel retailer’s depots was being diluted and sold through its network of retail stations.

Don't miss our piece on assuring fuel integrity from pipeline to pump.

This illicit activity had a negative effect on the Coral Gas brand, as consumers were no longer able to depend on the integrity of the LPG fuel they were purchasing. Manipulated fuel like this can lead to premature engine wear and tear, leading to costly repairs. And of course, it also leads to an erosion of consumer trust in the brand—and that can create significant revenue loss.

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