USDA Rural Business-Cooperative Service Administrator Lillian Salerno today participated in a grand opening ceremony for Quad County Corn Processors’ new cellulosic ethanol plant.
“Creating jobs and expanding economic opportunity for rural small businesses are top priorities for the Obama Administration,” Salerno said. “Plants like this will expand the potential for economic growth in rural America by maintaining momentum for the emerging bio-based industry and the more than 3,000 bio-based companies across the country.”
On July 1, Quad County became the first ethanol plant in Iowa to commercially produce cellulosic ethanol, as well as the first ethanol plant in the world to produce cellulosic ethanol from corn kernel fibers. The new plant will add jobs and help the company increase its product offering.
Since its opening 13 years ago, Quad County has received more than $17 million in USDA Rural Development loan guarantees and $950,000 in grants. This funding helped lead to the successful development of a patented process to turn corn kernel fibers into cellulosic ethanol, additional corn oil and a high-protein, low-fiber feed that will boost the plant’s ethanol production.
At full capacity, Quad County will use 12.5 million bushels of corn to produce around 35 million gallons of ethanol and 750,000 gallons of corn oil per year.
Salerno visited the facility in April during a three-state Midwest tour to highlight USDA investments that are helping expand emerging economic opportunities in the bio-economy.
USDA’s investments in rural communities support the rural way of life that stands as the backbone of our American values. President Obama and Agriculture Secretary Vilsack are committed to a smarter use of federal resources to foster sustainable economic prosperity and ensure the government is a strong partner for businesses, entrepreneurs and working families in rural communities.