Japan’s ag ministry director visits Guardian Energy

By Minnesota Bio-Fuels Association | August 31, 2017

The Deputy Director for Food Security at Japan's Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Kimihiko Eura, recently toured Guardian Energy in Janesville to learn about renewable fuel production in Minnesota.

During the two-hour tour, Eura learned about incoming grain handling, grain storage, liquefaction, fermentation, distillation, dried distillers grains (DDGs), corn oil, ethanol shipment and exports at Guardian Energy.

The tour was part of Eura's five-day working visit to Minnesota to learn about the state's agriculture industry.

"We are interested in learning how ethanol is produced and its impact on the demand and supply of corn. We are also looking at the possibility of importing DDGs to Japan," Eura said.

Eura's five-day visit is hosted by the Minnesota Corn Growers Association. Prior to visiting Guardian Energy, Eura visited the USDA's office in St Paul and a farm in Randolph.

For the remainder of his trip, he will visit more farms, a grain terminal, the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association, the University of Minnesota's wheat breeding program and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway's offices in Minneapolis.

Eura said his visit to Guardian Energy was his first time at an ethanol plant, adding Japan did not have its own ethanol industry.

Minnesota Bio-Fuels Association executive director, Tim Rudnicki and MBA board member and Al-Corn Clean Fuel CEO, Randall Doyal, accompanied Eura during the tour to brief him about Minnesota's ethanol industry. Guardian Energy's plant manager, Ben Stover, led the tour.

"Eura was interested in learning about Minnesota's Petroleum Displacement Law, which calls for higher usage of biofuels as well as how ethanol producers in our state are continuously lowering their carbon footprint," Rudnicki said.

Guardian Energy is a MBA member.

Other participants for the tour included Minnesota Corn Growers Association's Marketing and Biofuels Director Mitch Coulter, American Lung Association in Minnesota Director Jon Hunter, Minnesota Department of Agriculture Supervisor Bob Patton and IC Net Ltd. Business Development Specialist Shizuka Kunimoto.