Engineering News

VeraSun Energy to Pass One Billion Gallons of Ethanol Production Capacity with Startup of Bloomingburg, Ohio Biorefinery
Monday March 31, 6:22 pm ET

Company Begins Production at Eleventh Facility

BROOKINGS, S.D., March 31 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- VeraSun Energy Corp., one of the nation's largest ethanol producers, today announced the startup of its 110 million gallon per year (MMGY) production facility located near Bloomingburg, Ohio. With the closing of the merger between VeraSun and US BioEnergy becoming effective April 1, 2008, the Bloomingburg biorefinery represents the 11th VeraSun facility in operation, pushing the company's annual operating capacity to more than one billion gallons.

"We are pleased to bring our biorefinery in Bloomingburg online and begin to produce ethanol in the state of Ohio," said VeraSun CEO Don Endres. "The startup of this facility is a significant event for the community of Bloomingburg and a major milestone for VeraSun as our annual operating capacity exceeds the billion gallon mark. There has been tremendous growth in the demand for biofuels since the company was founded in 2001. This is a testament to what is possible when communities, industry and leadership work together to achieve a goal."

Earlier today, VeraSun announced that it closed its merger with US BioEnergy, effective tomorrow. In addition to the 11 current operating facilities, VeraSun expects to start up five more facilities in 2008, increasing its overall production capacity to 1.64 billion gallons and becoming the largest ethanol producer in the United States.

The Bloomingburg facility is the fourth operating ethanol production facility in the state of Ohio and one of the three biorefineries VeraSun purchased from ASAlliances Biofuels, LLC in August 2007. Total production capacity at the Bloomingburg facility represents more than 30 percent of Ohio's total capacity of 345MMGY.

"The ethanol produced in Bloomingburg will extend our domestic fuel supply and find its way into the marketplace as a low-carbon, high-octane component," Endres said. "The community of Bloomingburg and surrounding areas of Fayette County should be commended for the role they are playing in further reducing our dependence on foreign oil."

Located off State Route 238 Northeast, the plant will employ just over 50 people and annually process approximately 39 million bushels of corn to produce about 350,000 tons of distillers grains for livestock feed. Cargill will provide marketing services for the facility's ethanol and distillers grains.

"On behalf of the Village of Bloomingburg, Union Township and Fayette County, Ohio, we are very pleased that the new VeraSun Energy ethanol plant is operational," said Rob Hedrick, director for the Fayette County Economic Development office. "It has taken over three years to bring this massive project to fruition, requiring the coordination and cooperation between private enterprise, local, state and federal entities. We feel that VeraSun Energy will bring a positive economic impact to our area and we welcome them to our community."

About VeraSun Energy Corporation

VeraSun Energy Corporation, headquartered in Brookings, S.D., is a leading producer of renewable fuel. Founded in 2001, the company has more than one billion gallons per year (BGY) of ethanol production capacity through 11 operating facilities. Six facilities are currently either under construction or development with a combined capacity of 660MMGY. Upon completion of the new facilities, VeraSun Energy will have an annual production capacity of approximately 1.75 billion gallons. The company announced it started construction at its Aurora facility to extract oil from dried distillers grains, a co-product of the ethanol process, for use in biodiesel production.

VeraSun markets E85, a blend of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline for use in Flexible Fuel Vehicles (FFVs), directly to fuel retailers under the brand VE85(TM). VeraSun Energy now has approximately 150 VE85(TM) retail locations under contract in more than fifteen states and Washington, D.C.

Source: VeraSun Energy Corp.

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