ADM invests in Brazilian palms, biodiesel plant

By Associated Press
Posted Feb. 9 at 5:04 p.m.

Archer Daniels Midland Co. on Wednesday announced a 5-year plan to invest in nearly 30,000 acres of palm trees in Brazil and build a new processing plant as part of a program to use palm in its biodiesel production.

The plant and palm acres are located in the northern Brazilian state of Para. Construction on the plant near Sao Domingos do Capim is anticipated to begin in 2013. It is expected to be operational in 2016.

“This investment adds a new crop to our value chain in Brazil and diversifies our feedstock options for biodiesel production there, while at the same time supporting our commitment to sustainability in terms of both agricultural production and the livelihoods of farm families in Brazil,” CEO Patricia Woertz said in a statement.

The company did not disclose the value of the investment.

As part of the program, ADM will contract with about 600 family farms for 6,000 hectares (15,000 acres) of palm production and provide them with technical assistance focused on sustainable agricultural practices.

Decatur, Ill.-based ADM has been operating soybean processing plants in Brazil since 1997 and began biodiesel production there in 2007. It has more than 3,000 employees in Brazil and operates 42 grain elevators.

Its shares fell 24 cents to $35.85 in afternoon trading Wednesday.

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