Ethanol Plant managers help plan 2002 International Fuel Ethanol Workshop & Trade Show

BBI International expects a record number of participants, over 100 exhibitorsat ethanol industry's premier summer conference
By Kathy Bryan | March 01, 2002
"What is the purpose of the event?" was the first question addressed by the three general managers who make up the steering committee for the 2002 International Fuel Ethanol Workshop (FEW). Randy Doyal of Al-Corn Clean Fuels said "It is important because it is technology-focused and hosts a comprehensive trade show." Roger Burken, Chief Ethanol, added that the FEW provides a unique opportunity to discuss methods to improve both production and the bottom line profits with your peers. Nate Kimpel of New Energy Corporation said, "The FEW is a great place to network and make good connections - something that always benefits producers."

With these thoughts in mind as well as years of experience, the foundation for a meaningful and highly interesting agenda began to take shape. This year's steering committee meeting followed the National Ethanol Conference in San Diego. There are numerous challenges associated with the task of developing the agenda topics for the FEW. First, it is a very diverse audience, ranging from people recently introduced to ethanol to highly experienced producers and very technical researchers. Also in recent years, there have been increasing numbers of international participants and this year's program hopes to serve their needs as well.

To assist people new to the ethanol industry, the special session, "Ethanol 101" will be held on Tuesday prior to the FEW (limited to 100 people). At the FEW along with pertinent general sessions, there will be 3-4 concurrent breakout sessions this year. Each will follow a specific track, for instance; Shop Talk (back by popular demand), Management Issues, Near-Term Technological Progress, and possibly one more to cover a variety of pertinent issues.

Friday will again hold the very interactive Round Robin discussions followed by the Forum of Futuristic Thinkers. The primary issues identified last year during the Friday program were incorporated by the 2002 FEW steering committee as part of the overall agenda this year. It was decided that the FEW will continue over same number of days (Tuesday through Friday) so that there is adequate time for the discussions and also for one-on-one meetings and networking. It is often the only opportunity that representatives from ethanol facilities have to gather and discuss production issues.

Check the website, www.bbiethanol.com/few/, for the final agenda that is currently under development. Many thanks to Roger, Nate and Randy for their valuable input and knowledge!