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Platinum Crush

Coming soon: Plant to open in 2024; Buena Vista County site to crush 38.5 million bushels of soybeans per year

ALTA — With an estimated construction cost of $350 million, the modern soybean processing facility coined Platinum Crush will be operational by 2024.

Located in Buena Vista County near Alta, the plant will crush 38.5 million bushels of soybeans annually or 110,000 bushels daily.

“Platinum Crush is positioned to extract all the value possible from locally grown soybeans,” said Mike Kinley, the managing member of Ag Development Group LLC, which develops value-added projects for the ag sector. “This plant can supply both food and fuel needs. It will also bring Buena Vista County and the surrounding area into the center of the global food and fuel economy.”

Platinum Crush will produce 847,000 tons of soybean meal per year for livestock feed markets, 450 million pounds of crude soybean oil per year and 77,000 tons of pelleted soybean hulls per year. The soymeal and soy hulls, which contain highly digestible fiber, will be used in livestock feed rations.

“Soy oil is in very high demand and as such we have had many interested parties to purchase our oil. We have not finalized that decision at this time,” Kinley said. “Given the buildout of the renewable diesel industry it appears that demand will remain high for at least a decade.”

Soybean oil produced by Platinum Crush can be used for a variety of applications, including the human food industry and renewable diesel bioenergy segment.

“Platinum Crush will add tremendous value to soybeans in northwest Iowa,” said Kinley, who noted that Ag Development Group and N Bowdish Company will own a portion of Platinum Crush. “By streamlining the supply chain, this plant will also save local soybean growers time and money, plus it will open up a more direct relationship with the processor.”

Platinum Crush will be built adjacent to the CN Railway, which will service the facility.

“The plant is designed to receive and elevate 60,000 bushels per hour, which is more than double the receiving and elevation of your average industry facility,” he said. ”With this speed, a producer will likely only be on our property for eight to 10 minutes, which is of great value to the producer as truck-deliver labor is very expensive and no one can afford to sit and wait for hours as they do at older facilities.”

Alta was chosen as the construction site because access to a steady local soybean supply “is key to projects such as this.”

“Northwest Iowa has some of the most productive land in the world and Buena Vista County and the surrounding 10 counties represent not only high production potential but very sustainable production. They get a solid crop year in and year out and the 20-year history proves that,” Kinley said.

Farmer contracts have not been worked up just yet, but interest remains “very high,” Kinley said. Farmers usually will deliver soybeans as far away as 60 miles and because the Platinum Crush plant will have efficient bean unloading and soy meal loading capability, a soybean producer or meal buyer will “save significant time on site” compared to other older soybean processing facilities.

“When you think of that dynamic, this plant will draw interest from a significant distance,” he said.

The crushing plant also will create 50 to 60 jobs.

“This facility will offer very high quality jobs and a very high quality work environment to be in. We will need key roles ranging from production management to quality control. Facilities such as this have the need for well-trained operators and solid management throughout the ranks of the organization,” Kinley said.

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