Photo courtesy of POET.
“This expansion will add 26 million bushels of new corn demand annually for the local area and create new jobs and economic activity for rural Ohio,” said Jeff Broin, chief executive officer of POET. “In recent years, I know farmers are struggling with low commodity prices, which is creating lower farm incomes and decreasing land values. Biofuels have been the only real growth sector for ag commodities in the past decade. We will need to see biofuels increase as a percentage of the U.S. and world fuel supply, and as a percentage of our gas tanks to stabilize worldwide ag prices and land values. We are excited that the Marion plant expansion can play a small role in this important arena.”
This expansion is the largest project in the Marion area since the construction of the original POET Biorefining – Marion in 2008, the company said. The $120 million project includes 225 temporary construction jobs and 18 to 21 new permanent jobs at the site. It also adds new corn demand.
Ohio leaders, farmers and area residents joined POET in the expansion celebration.
Comments from Ohio leaders on the POET Biorefining – Marion expansion:
“Renewable fuels have been a bright spot in an agriculture economy marked by low commodity prices and flat farm income,” Senator Sherrod Brown said. “With this announcement, POET Biorefining-Marion is not only creating good paying jobs in one of our most important sectors – it is leading the way for future use of biofuels in the ag sector.”
Ohio leaders are pleased by the expansion and the impact it will have on the local agriculture sector.
“POET’s expansion will create even more market opportunities for Ohio’s producers and help the state’s number one industry, food and agriculture, continue to grow,” said David T. Daniels, director of the Ohio Department of Agriculture. “Agribusinesses recognize Ohio’s growth environment and ultimately all Ohioans – consumers and farmers – benefit from this growth.”
POET has a network of 27 production facilities. POET, through its joint venture with DSM, also operates a commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol plant in Emmetsburg, Iowa, U.S.