BREWSTER, MINNESOTA, U.S. — The North Dakota Soybean Processors (NDSP) is abandoning its efforts to build a large-scale soybean crushing facility at the Spiritwood Energy Park in Spiritwood, North Dakota, U.S.

The NDSP has spent more than three years, $6 million and thousands of hours of management time toward planning the facility.

“We made every effort to build the first farmer-owned soybean crush plant in the State of North Dakota at the Spiritwood Energy Park site,” said Bruce Hill, president of NDSP. “We had the site and plant engineering completed, construction contract bids solicited, the air permit in hand, and we had assembled commitments and term sheets with producer partnerships and debt financing totaling over $278,000,000 to fully fund the project.”

The Spiritwood Energy Park Association (SEPA) board voted in July 2019 to terminate the site contract to construct a soybean crush plant.

“We were disappointed in the decision and we went to court to try and build a plant at that site,” Hill said. “Last week, NDSP agreed with SEPA to dismiss its lawsuit with prejudice, meaning its bid to build a plant at the Spiritwood site is over.

“We are not done in our efforts. Our plant and site engineering is portable, and our air permit can be amended and we intend to move forward with our efforts to bring the first farmer-owned soybean crush plant to the State of North Dakota, it just won’t be at Spiritwood.”

When completed, the NDSP soybean-crushing facility will support an estimated 60 jobs in the region and annually crush 42 million bushels of locally grown soybeans and produce approximately 935,000 tons of soybean meal and 475 million pounds of soybean oil for sale into domestic and export animal feed and soybean oil markets, including with respect to the soybean oil serving as a renewable feedstock for planned or existing renewable diesel refinery facilities in North Dakota and throughout the western United States.

NDSP is a wholly owned subsidiary of Minnesota Soybean Processors, a Minnesota cooperative with more than 2,300 farmer-members residing in over five states that owns and operates a large-scale soybean crush and feed and bio-diesel production facility in Southwestern Minnesota.

The Spiritwood Energy Park is a 551-acre industrial park located approximately 10 miles east of Jamestown, North Dakota and just south of Spiritwood, North Dakota. Great River Energy-Spiritwood Station combined heat and power plant is just to the east of the Energy Park. Dakota Spirit AgEnergy became fully operational in 2015 and is the anchor tenant at the Spiritwood Energy Park.  This 65 million-gallon-per year biorefinery produces ethanol, distillers grains and fuel-grade corn oil. Dakota Spirit AgEnergy utilizes steam from Spiritwood Station for its operations.