Monday, January 15, 2007

Cargill gets into the ethanol business

The agribusiness giant Cargill is getting into the ethanol business, with plans for four huge plants (100 million gallons per year) in the Midwest. The Twin Cities-based company did not specify the locations of the plants, other than that they would not be in Minnesota.

Cautiously skeptical of ethanol in the past, Cargill is positioning itself as an aggressive player in the biofuels arena. It's formed a subsidiary called Emerald Renewable Energy to develop and invest in renewable energy projects.

From the St. Paul Pioneer Press:

"We still think there are questions that need to be answered," Cargill spokesman Bill Brady said Monday. But the company also sees opportunity, and "we think biofuels have a role to play … and Cargill has a lot of core expertise in a lot of aspects of the ethanol industry."

Cargill already has two corn-milling plants that make ethanol and other corn products. The four new ethanol-only plants are signaling a modest shift for the company, although Brady points out that Cargill will continue to focus its expertise on food and agriculture, with energy as a component of that.

The company expects the ethanol plants to create about 40 jobs per location.

Photo credit: NREL

1 comment:

Craig Mackintosh said...

Cargill's bold trample across our landscape has only been with self-interest at heart to date, so we have no reason to suspect a move to Biofuels (and here) will be any different. This is global domination gone mad. Cargill has used our tax dollars (government subsidies) to give it the advantage over the little guy, and has a firm grip over almost every aspect of the food market. The Microsoft monopoly had nothing on these guys.