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Better Biodiesel looks to expand in Utah

By Dave Nilles | January 10, 2007
A Utah biodiesel producer has found a buyer for its fuel and announced plans on expanding production capacity in 2007. Better Biodiesel Inc. announced today that its first commercial shipment of biodiesel was delivered to heavy hauling truck firm Christensen Brothers of Spanish Fork, Utah.

Christensen is the first commercial user of Better Biodiesel's fuel, which is produced in a 3 MMgy plant in Spanish Fork. Better Biodiesel spokesman Anthony Evans said the plant hasn't operated at full capacity since it came on line in September 2006. Instead, it has operated to meet demand. Better Biodiesel previously donated fuel to the Earthrace project, which is a B100-powered boat aiming to set a world record for circumnavigating the globe.

"Christensen Brothers is pleased with the performance and attributes of [Better Biodiesel's] fuel, including its potential to lower maintenance costs and enhance the longevity of its engines and equipment," said Christensen Brothers CEO Lew Christensen.

According to a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing, Better Biodiesel's 175,000-square foot facility is located on a leased, five-acre parcel of land in Spanish Fork, Utah, near Interstate 15. The facility contains offices, laboratories, and refining, maintenance and fabrication areas. The site, which has four railroad spurs, is adjacent to 28 acres, which could be used for expansion.

On Sept. 29, 2006, Better Biodiesel completed acquisition of Domestic Energy Partners LLC, which developed the multi-feedstock processor in Spanish Fork. The SEC filing said Better Biodiesel's subsidiary, Domestic Energy Partners LLC, has a patent pending on its biodiesel process technology. The company said its process uses a "continuous flow method that can process a wide variety of raw feedstock oils into biodiesel fuel in a matter of minutes."

Better Biodiesel plans to expand production to 100 MMgy of biodiesel by year's end, Evans said. He added that Better Biodiesel's business model is to manufacture numerous 10 MMgy facilities.

Most, if not all, of the new capacity will be built in Spanish Fork, which is located 50 miles south of Salt Lake City. The site's infrastructure would likely need to be developed to handle the expansion. The SEC filing said the site's tank farm consists of three 10,000-gallon tanks and one 108,000-gallon tank for storing feedstock oils, finished biodiesel and glycerin.

The first expansion is expected to be complete by the end of the first quarter of 2007 depending on the successful raising of capital, Evans said. He added that an engineering firm has been hired to develop the expansion.

Dave Nilles is Online Editor for Biodiesel Magazine. Reach him at dnilles@bbibiofuels.com or (701) 373-0636.

Posted: 9:43 a.m. CST Thursday, January 18, 2007
 

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