Monday, August 07, 2017

Brazil wins first corn ethanol plant

Lucas do Rio Verde-the so-called off-season grew up, was hitting records, became a supersafra for the first time, can border the 100 million tonnes of maize. There are so many grains that, when you''re the main producing regions of Mato Grosso, is hard not to find them stored outdoors or silo bags-bags made of a special plastic – with up to 90 meters long, where the cereal can be stored for up to a year.
The scenario is not new, but in Lucas do Rio Verde (MT), he begins to change. Six kilometer after the precious, the statue of a chicken from 10 meters high, in clover road MT-449 with the Avenue of faith, is to be inaugurated this week the first ethanol plant made entirely of corn from Brazil, the FS bioenergy. Until then, the corn-based ethanol produced in the country was seeing flex plants, producing both sugar cane ethanol, and the grain.
The FS is just the first of what promises to become an important alternative to the processing and the marketing of crops that tend to get bigger. "For us, it''s great," says Elso Pavithran, 62-year-old producer and Vice President of the Association of Soy and corn producers (Aprosoja-MT). "We still have potential to produce more corn in the region, especially with the productivity gains brought by the integration of cultures."
Foreign investment
Joint venture between the brazilian Fiagril and the American Agricultural Group, Summit Manager FS Bioenergy received investments of R $450 million to be raised. Scheduled to be inaugurated on Friday, she will produce 180,000 tons of bran, 6000 tons of corn oil and energy. In addition, of course, ethanol. Initially will be 240 million liters per year, that consume 600,000 tons of corn. This capacity can be doubled.
Little, for the almost 30 million tonnes produced only in the State of Mato Grosso. But it is expected that it is not the only FS Bioenergy – and most likely, no other investors interested in this type of fuel. In addition to the power plant in Lucas do Rio Verde, FS would be planning two more units, one of which one would be in Sinop (MT), according to the producers of the region.
The farmers themselves are also beginning to study the possibility to organize to benefit the corn. "We have discussed the feasibility of investing in a plant, in our cooperative," says Pavithran.
These scattered initiatives of entrepreneurs, however, must win a bigger dimension with the prospects created by RenovaBio. The program aims to increase the production of biofuels to achieve the targets for the reduction of emission of pollutants, established by COP-21. First initiative which brought together the ministries of agriculture, energy and environment, the RenovaBio went through public consultation and expects Government definitions. There''s a release date.
Another level
"While there is a regulatory framework setting out where will the energy policy, the expansion of production (corn ethanol) will be located and made by individual initiatives," says Marlon Arraes garden, General Coordinator of the biofuels Department of the Ministry of mines and energy (MME). "We are exactly arguing that policy, to give predictability to producers, the industry and investors."
Also give a perspective of going to scale, in addition to other incentives for investments. Should be established for the enterprises that have smaller carbon footprint, financial instruments bound, still under discussion. Second garden, have not been provided government subsidies for the project.
"The RenovaBio makes no distinction in relation to the origin of the raw material or the product: if it is biofuel and have low carbon footprint will participate in the program," he says. The smaller this footprint, the more that benefit still under discussion.
"We know that corn-based ethanol in the composition of the offer will be relentless," said garden. "Unlike sugarcane, corn can be stored and there is a good gap for this fuel type win market in the off season."
Good news for producers, since the supersafra of 100 million must seem small, in the medium term. "Between six to eight years, it is expected that production will reach 200 million tons," says Plinio Nastari, Datagro consulting President. "The price at origin will continue down, creating a great opportunity for improvement."
In the projections of Datagro, the production of corn-based ethanol, which in 2015/2016 crop was of 141 million pounds, will reach 750 million liters in the 2018/2019 collection. Very little when compared to 24.7 billion liters of ethanol from sugar cane that must be produced in 2017/2018, second to Only, which represents producers. But the trend is bullish.
"Everything that can be transformed into finished product will be a good way out," says Carlos Simon, 54 years, producer and President of the Rural Union of Lucas do Rio Verde. "The production has grown so much that the price has only improved thanks to government auctions."
Exactly so, farmers have worked to decrease production in the short term. Second Pavithran, the idea is to encourage producers to use only the best areas of their properties and leave uncultivated parts of land that need more investment in fertilization and soil correction.
When the corn ethanol plants become a reality, however, he may benefit from yet another advantage. As in FS, they can also produce the DDGS, stands for dry beans by distillation. With high content of protein, that benefited from the grain byproduct is used for animal feed and tends to create an opportunity to diversify.
Sought, the JS Bioenergy, Agricultural Summit Group and the ICM, a provider of factory equipment, not granted interview.
Exame - 06/08/2017
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