Business Briefs

By Staff | September 23, 2013

Patricia Woertz, president, CEO and chairman of Archer Daniels Midlands Co., was named to the U.S. Section of the U.S.-Brazil CEO Forum, and appointed by the U.S. government to serve as chair of that section. The forum was created in 2007 by the U.S. and Brazilian governments to strengthen economic and commercial ties between the two countries. 


Michael Best & Friedrich LLP has announced the addition of Angela James as senior counsel in the Environmental Practice Group and the Energy and Sustainability Industry Team. James is located in the firm’s Madison office. She has worked on matters related to industrial regulatory compliance, air and water permitting, water quality trading, utility ratemaking and energy regulation. Prior to joining Michael Best & Friedrich, James was a senior associate at Stafford Rosenbaum LLP from 2000-'04 and a corporate attorney at Madison Gas and Electric Co. from 2004-'12. She most recently served as the vice president of government relations with the Wisconsin Paper Council.

Fluid Quip Process Technologies has announced Andrew Whalen has joined the company as a process engineer. He will support instillation and optimization of FQPT’s Selective Grinding Technology systems and Brix Oil Separation Systems. Whalen has a degree in chemical engineering from the University of Dayton.

Greenbelt Resources Corp. has announced successful performance testing results from its automated distillation module, which is available separately or as part of a complete sustainable energy production system. It efficiently generated hydrous ethanol, distilled water and fertilizer from a beer stock of 4 percent ethanol at a rate of 70,000 gallons per year, or 10 gallons per hour. The system will output at a higher rate of ethanol production when feedstock originates at a higher concentration of ethanol, but can produce fuel-grade ethanol with optimum energy efficiency from low-ethanol-concentration feeds. 

Neste Oil has added technical corn oil produced as a coproduct to ethanol to the range of feedstocks it uses to produce NExBTL renewable diesel. Trials to confirm the suitability of technical corn oil for the production of NExBTL were carried out this spring. According to Neste Oil, the feedstock also meets its strict sustainability criteria. Following an extensive evaluation, Neste Oil has begun using technical corn oil on a commercial basis and is currently sourcing feedstock supplies from the U.S. 

Butterworth Inc., a manufacturer of industrial tank cleaning equipment, has announced the introduction of the unidirectional BC machine, which creates a two nozzle cone-shaped circular cleaning pattern with impact impingement. The new tank cleaning machine is used to remove machining oils from steel surfaces in manufacturing processes. The company has also introduced 12 mm and 14 mm LTQ machines, which are four-nozzle machines typically used in sanitary applications, such as ethanol fermenters, where increased density of the cleaning pattern results in a highly efficient cleaning process. The four-nozzle machines can achieve a flow rate of up to 300 gpm due to specific process requirements. In addition, Butterworth’s’ CAT Tank Cleaning Machine is a single-nozzle, programmable, fixed-in-place machine that gives the end user the ability to determine how much of the tank to clean. 

The U.S. Grains Council elected Julius Schaaf as chairman of its board of directors at its 53rd Annual Board of Delegates Meeting in Ottawa, Canada. Schaaf is a fifth-generation farmer from Randolph, Iowa. He has been a member of the delegation of the USGC and member of the Iowa Corn Promotion Board since 2003. He is past chairman of the Iowa Corn Promotion Board and has served on the research and biotech committees for the Iowa Corn Promotion Board.  

Michael “Blick” Blickenstaff has been named maintenance manager for Aventine Renewable Energy Inc.’s plant in Pekin, Ill. He began work in the biofuels business in 1978 at the Tate & Lyle South Plant in Lafayette, Ind., and worked at the Decatur, Ill., and Loudon, Tenn., plants before taking early retirement after spending 27 years with the company. In 2005, he oversaw the startup of California’s first ethanol plant, which is located in Visilia. He has also served as the owners representative and plant manager for Green Plains Renewable Energy in west Tennessee, as plant manager for Conestoga Energy Partners in Liberal, Kan., and Guardian Lima in Ohio. Most recently, he served as operations manager at Hereford Renewable Energy in Hereford, Texas. 

California Ethanol & Power LLC has added two senior executives to its management team. Ralph Dehrmann joined the company as executive vice president of technologies and operations. He has 25 years of experience in the management and development of sugarcane processing facilities. Prior to joining CE&P, he managed the front-end engineering design, equipment supplier selection and related services for a sugarcane ethanol, power and biogas plant in Sierra Leone. Steven Passantino joined CE&P as vice president of financing. He has more than 20 years of experience in accounting, finance and information technology. He was most recently the corporate controller for a material handling systems development company wholly owned and operated by Danaher Corp.

East Kansas Agri-Energy LLC has added Jeff Oestmann as its new CEO. Oestmann has nearly 20 years of experience in the bioenergy and grain processing industries. His professional background includes risk management, trading, marketing and operations roles in Cargill’s grain and energy business in the U.S. and Europe. He most recently served as president and CEO of Soy Energy LLC, a biodiesel plant located in Mason City, Iowa. Oestmann has also served on the Renewable Fuels Association’s market development committee and on the Iowa Biodiesel Board.  

Viaspace Inc. has announced the election of Khurram Irshad to its board of directors. He will take an active role in the company and help lead additional Giant King Grass bioenergy project developments, especially in Pakistan. Irshad is a citizen of Pakistan and a resident of California. He heads the agribusiness consulting firm Amaanco and is founder of Winergy Pakistan Ltd., which has    developed a biogas plant at Landhi Cattle Colony in Karachi, Pakistan. He is also chairman and founder of Aquatech Infrastructures Ltd., a water and wastewater treatment company in Pakistan.