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Verbio expands with second integrated biorefinery in North America

Verbio expands with second integrated biorefinery in North America
Marking the start of construction on May 23, 2024, were Chuck Tuskan (left), General Manager Verbio South Bend; Sheila Niezgodski, South Bend Councilor; Claus Sauter, CEO, Verbio AG; James Mueller Mayor of South Bend; Greg Northrup, CEO, and President, Verbio North America Holdings Corp.; Rob Johnson, Verbio South Bend Plant Manager; Erik Glavich, Director Growth & Opportunity City of South Bend (photo courtesy Verbio).

In the United States (US), Verbio North America Holdings Corporation, a subsidiary of Germany-headed ethanol, biodiesel, and biomethane major VERBIO Vereinigte BioEnergie AG (VERBIO) has announced that it has begun construction to convert its Verbio South Bend ethanol plant in Indiana (IN) into the company's second integrated biorefinery plant in North America.

The facility will incorporate the production of renewable natural gas (RNG) and bioethanol using an innovative production approach. The company received approval for its expansion proposal from the City of South Bend in April 2024.

Following the application of the Verbio technology and commissioning, Verbio targets a production capacity of at least 85 million (US) gallons of corn ethanol and 2.8 billion cubic feet (Bcf) of RNG annually.

We are excited about Verbio’s expansion plans and their impact on our regional economy. As an industry leader in renewable natural gas production, Verbio will bring new life to the ethanol plant with cutting-edge green technology that will add to South Bend’s clean energy portfolio, noted South Bend Mayor James Mueller.

First phase of plant upgrade

In this first phase of upgrading the South Bend plant over the next 6 months, Verbio will build the foundations for eight new anaerobic digesters (AD) tanks.

Major construction planned for the second phase includes the erection of an additional eight digesters, related piping and wiring, the construction of several new buildings, and the addition of miscellaneous process equipment.

The RNG produced at Verbio South Bend will be fed to the regional natural gas grid and support the needs of industrial and commercial uses.

We look forward to creating meaningful employment opportunities for the citizens of South Bend and the surrounding area as the company expands its renewable energy footprint in the Midwest, remarked Claus Sauter, CEO of Verbio.

Verbio acquired the plant in May 2023 from Mercuria Investments and announced an estimated total investment plan of US$230 million.

Commercial production of RNG is expected to begin in 2026.

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