Vireol Bio-Energy LLC to open Virginia plant

By Chris Hanson | April 11, 2014

After getting approval in March for a $250,000 grant from Hopewell’s City Council, Vireol Bio-Energy LLC announced it is opening its multi-feedstock ethanol plant, which will be the biggest ethanol plant on the East Coast.

The plant is capable of producing 63 million gallons of ethanol annually and will create 70 direct jobs and 3,000 additional jobs within Virginia’s agricultural industry.

“We are delighted to advise that with the support of Governor McAuliffe’s office and the City of Hopewell, we will be starting production of renewable ethanol this month,” said Peter McGenity, CEO of Vireol.

“In the first month of my administration, I was able to sit down with Vireol’s business and investment team to share with them my commitment to creating jobs and diversifying the Commonwealth’s economy. Vireol’s decision to begin ethanol production here in Virginia, rather than sending the plant’s assets overseas, brings to life an impressive yet completely unutilized facility that will create good paying jobs right here in Virginia,” said Governor Terry McAuliffe.

Vireol was recently approved by a 3 to 2 vote by the city council for a grant in March 2014 that aimed to get the plant in operation status.

The plant, originally named Appomattox Bio Energy, was built by Osage Bio Energy. The facility was mechanically complete in August 2010 but never reached full production. Vireol purchased the barley-to-ethanol plant last year. The company originally planned dismantled and ship the facility to the U.K., but decided to take advantage of the more focused legislative environment and more mature U.S. market.