Summit Agricultural Group has announced the acquisition of a biorefinery in Kansas, as part of its plan to develop the largest wheat protein production facility in North America.
The company gained access to the biorefinery through its acquisition of Prairie Horizon Agri-Energy, a renewable fuel corn producer that has been in operation since 2006. The deal was made through its investment affiliate Summit Ag Investors.
Summit intends to construct a wheat protein ingredients facility and retrofit the existing corn-based ethanol plant to produce ethanol from wheat starch.
The project will total more than $200 million and will see the wheat plant operational within two years. According to Summit, the wheat protein will be used in a variety of applications such as baked goods, pet food and aquaculture feed.
“Today, wheat protein demand in the US is heavily reliant on imports and with consumers demanding more transparency about the origins of the food they eat, we see a real opportunity,” said Bruce Rastetter, CEO of Summit Agricultural Group.
Upon completion of the new plant and the conversion, Summit claims it will be the largest wheat protein producer in North America and will generate low carbon intensity renewable fuel.
Justin Kirchhoff, president of Summit Ag Investors, added: “We ran a thorough search across the US to identify the best site to execute on this strategy around plant proteins, which leverages Summit’s legacy operating in the biofuels and agriculture sectors.
“Given Prairie Horizon’s direct access to abundant local wheat production and Kansas’ business-friendly environment, we believe we have a significant advantage. Our investment will bring additional jobs to rural America, increase the domestic supply of sustainable protein ingredients, reduce reliance on imports, and further reduce our carbon footprint through this proven process.”
Located in Phillipsburg, Kansas, the acquired biorefinery plant has a production capacity of 40 million gallons per year and employs around 30 people.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2021
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