Sunday, February 04, 2007

More Ethanol Plants Coming Online

Not too far from my location, a new ethanol plant is being planned for Royal, Illinois. Royal is a small farming town of about 300 people, but is in the center of a major agricultural area. The plant will produce 100 million gallons of ethanol per year.

ROYAL – When Walker Filbert and other Pike County leaders started making
plans to build an ethanol plant at Griggsville, the fuel enhancer made from corn
was selling for less than $1 a gallon.
But four and a half years later, that price has nearly quadrupled, ethanol is the talk of the market, the Pike County project has expanded to a site at Royal in Champaign County and planners are ready to break ground this spring, after they wrap up a few details, at a 62-acre site just north of the JBS United elevator .
Walker Filbert, a Pike County lawyer who's a spokesman for the Griggsville project, said the partnership put together there initially made the Royal site a natural because JBS has elevators at both sites to get the corn the plants will turn into
ethanol.
"We had been working to plan the Pike County facility and as part of
the process, we said, JBS has a facility at Royal so let's do something there, "
Filbert said. "A year ago in January, we started putting that plan
together."
"Royal has productive farmers, great soil, lots of corn, a natural
location," said Reg Ankrom, who's part of the planning team for the $200 million
Royal project.
Les Busboom, manager of JBS' Royal elevator, said the elevator
will scout far afield to find the estimated 37 million bushels of corn to
produce 100 million gallons of ethanol a year beginning in about 2008.
"We'll quadruple our corn business," Busboom said. "We've purchased another area
elevator and we expect to close this month. The arrangement between JBS and the
ethanol plants is fantastic because we have exclusive rights here and in
Griggsville to supply the plants. That's a high-end market every day."

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