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Forum staff reports, Published January 11 2011

Green Plains bids for Fergus Falls ethanol plant

FERGUS FALLS, Minn. – Green Plains Renewable Energy Inc., the fourth-largest ethanol producer in the world, has put a bid in to buy a Fergus Falls ethanol plant.

Green Plains signed a purchase agreement for Otter Tail Enterprises LLC on Monday. The Fergus Falls plant is a 55 million-gallon-per-year dry-mill ethanol plant. Otter Tail Ag Enterprises began bankruptcy proceedings in 2009.

Jim Stark, a Green Plains investor and media relations representative for the company, said if the company’s bid is confirmed by bankruptcy court, Green Plains’ bid would then be considered the bid to beat in an asset auction to be held in the next 60 days, said Jim Stark, a Green Plains investor and media relations representative for the company.

Stark said there are no assurances Green Plains will have the winning bid.

The acquisition would increase operating capacity of Green Plains by about 8 percent.

“We currently are at eight plants with operating capacity of about 657 million gallons,” Stark said.