Itochu co-invests with Flint Hills and Benefuel in Nebraska 2G biodiesel plant

May 27, 2013 |

In Nebraska, ITOCHU together with ITOCHU ENEX CO has invested in a 50 million gallon per year, next-generation biodiesel fuel project, which Flint Hills Resources Renewables LLC, and Benefuel Inc. are jointly developing in Beatrice. The projected production volume of this facility alone corresponds to approximately 5% of the current biodiesel production in the U.S.

Core to Benefuel’s process technology is its bi-functional solid-catalyst, which converts not only the oil and fat, but also free fatty acids (FFA) into BDF in a single step. The FFA contained in the feedstocks is an inhibitor for conversion of oil and fat into BDF, and must be removed with expensive purification and refining processes. This novel technology enables the use of cheaper, high FFA content and inedible feedstocks, such as distillers corn oil from ethanol refining, waste vegetable oils, animal fats, and unrefined oils, without the costly purification and refining processes. Benefuel’s patented process technology represents a strong competitive advantage over conventional BDF processing technologies, since feedstock costs generally account for 75%-90% of total processing costs.

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Category: Fuels

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