Carper & Perdue Press Conference: Biofuels and Energy Independence
Toured Perdue Soybean Oil Refinery and Discussed Advances and Future Technologies
Salisbury, MD – U.S. Senator Tom Carper, D, Del., was joined by Perdue Chairman Jim Perdue and President of Perdue AgriBusiness Dick Willey at Perdue’s AgriBusiness headquarters in Salisbury, MD, on Friday, February 2nd, where they toured Perdue’s Soybean Oil Refinery and talked about the advances in biofuels being made in an effort to rid the United States of its reliance on foreign oil. In June 2006, Perdue Incorporated formed Perdue BioEnergy LLC, a new company that focuses on the growing biofuels industry. Senator Carper, a key proponent of research and technology in alternative energy resources, met with company officials to discuss what has long been a priority for him as a United States Senator. Jim Perdue, Dick Willey and Senator Carper made remarks at the training facility after touring the Soybean Oil Refinery. Soybeans purchased by Perdue from farmers in Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia are crushed and separated into soybean meal and soybean oil. The oil is then refined for use in the food and fuel industries. Currently, Perdue is using biodiesel blends in its refined oil delivery fleet. Over the next few years, Perdue intends to install the needed infrastructure to expand the use of biodiesel blends in the remainder of its fleet. “Local agriculture and food products companies on Delmarva will play a key role in helping the United States produce alternative options for providing energy, particularly those companies with operations in southern Delaware,” said Senator Carper. “I applaud Jim Perdue and his company for setting a fine example of what local and international companies can do to help the United States expand the use of biofuels. Perdue is setting an example of what can be done on the part of the private sector, right here in our area.” Jim Perdue said, “We are committed to the biofuels market, as a supplier, producer and consumer. This is consistent with our corporate commitment to agriculture and environmental stewardship, and a logical extension of our decades-long business in procuring, processing and marketing grains and oilseeds. We support the efforts of Senator Carper to develop biofuels markets and encourage Congress to fund research into the development of other sources of ethanol, such as corn stalks, switchgrass and wood chips.” The Senator discussed the President’s State of the Union address and his recent visit to Wilmington, DE, to see the efforts DuPont is making in developing new methods for producing ethanol and tied in his recent trip to the North American Auto Show. He mentioned new developments in lean burn diesel, electric and electric hybrid vehicles and how the auto and truck industry represent a strong commitment on the part of the leading companies to make strides in reducing our dependence on foreign oil. Perdue, headquartered just over the Delaware line in Salisbury, MD, has extensive operations in Delaware including feed and grain processing, poultry processing and relationships with many Delaware farmers. In addition to its own activities in producing and supplying feedstocks from its soy processing operations, Perdue is considering new investments in biofuel production and the formation of strategic partnerships in order to meet the nation’s energy needs and reduce our dependence on foreign oil.