Currently, seven companies in the Czech Republic are producing pellets as their primary activity. Pellets are also produced by a few companies for which the pellets production is of marginal interest and which usually use residues from their wood or agricultural production.
The total installed production capacity in 2008 is estimated at almost 80,000 tons, the actual production at almost 30,000 tons. Other sources (Habart 2009) provide higher estimations. In addition, some manufacturers produce agropellets.
Wood pellets are produced with very high qualities and some manufacturers possess the certificates Önorm M 7135 or DINplus. High qualities are necessary to allow for the export of pellets, mainly to Germany and Austria. Only approximately 10% of the total pellets produced in the Czech Republic are used in the domestic market. For large-scale combustion mainly agropellets are considered.
For the domestic market, pellets are mainly bagged (small and big bags). High investment costs for residential pellet boilers are the main barrier to market growth in the residential sector. Other obstacles for the expansion of the pellets market are the fluctuation of the pellet prices, missing distribution channels and missing delivery systems to small customers.
However, further strong market growth is supported by the national policy framework: A RES Electricity Act facilitates the use of biomass (often agropellets) in CHP plants and the installation of small-scale pellet appliances as well as the investment in pellet production plants is subsidized.
Please refer to the Publication section for a comprehensive report on the Czech pellet market.