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State's First Soybean Crush Plant to be Built in Waupun
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 06/07/2018

After a dozen years of studying the feasibility of the idea, Wisconsin will finally get its very own soybean crushing facility. The Wisconsin Soybean Marketing Board announced that it has teamed up with the City of Waupun to solicit development of the plant, which will allow producers to have their crop processed locally instead of taking it out of state.

The proposed $150 million project will be built in the Waupun Industrial Park by WSBCP, LLC. Although Wisconsin ranks 12th in the U.S. for soybean production, WSMB Director Bob Karls says growers have never had the ability to process those beans locally into soy oil, soy protein and soy meal used for animal feed.

"With soybean production increasing annually in Wisconsin, an in-state crushing facility will help reduce costs for farmers, keep jobs in Wisconsin, reduce wear and tear on infrastructure and contribute positively to the City of Waupun as well as the state economy," Karls said. "This project will significantly benefit Wisconsin's farmers and we are thrilled to be taking the next step forward to bring this state-of-the-art facility to Waupun."

Upon completion, the plant is expected to employ nearly 40 full-time staff with an annual estimated payroll of $2.2 million.

The developer has already filed for an air permit with the Department of Natural Resources and is working with city officials to create a Tax Increment Financing district to help cover the cost of the project. The plant is expected to be in operation by 2020 and will have the capacity to process up to 100,000 bushels of soybeans each day.

Meanwhile, Karls said the location for the facility is ideal, as Waupun is centrally located along the U.S. Highway 151 corridor within an hour's drive of Madison, Milwaukee and the Fox Cities.

The soybean group first launched a feasibility study for building a crush plant back in 2006 using funds from the state checkoff program. At the time, the Wisconsin Soybean Association also commissioned a grower task force to work with consultants to thoroughly evaluate the state soybean market and consider factors such as soybean supply and end user demand, permitting and the potential for financing and situating a crush plant in Wisconsin.

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