FARGO, N.D. (AP) - A Minnesota cooperative plans to build a $240 million soybean processing plant in North Dakota. Officials with Minnesota Soybean Processors, or MnSP, say the co-op has selected a site on 150 acres near Spiritwood, in eastern North Dakota. The group says the facility would produce 900,000 tons of soybean meal and 490 million pounds of soybean oil a year. Half of the oil would produce biodiesel.
North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum says the plant should add up to 60 jobs and support local service companies, vendors and suppliers. It would be the first of its kind in North Dakota.
The group said in a news release that construction would begin "following further due diligence, necessary approvals and a successful engineering study."
MnSP operates a soybean crush facility in Brewster, Minnesota.
MANDAN, ND (NDDA) - Attendees at the North Dakota Farmers Market and Growers Association (NDFMGA) & Local Foods Conference held this week learned that the Hunger Free ND Garden Project has recorded volunteer donations of more than 1.8 million pounds of fresh produce to food pantries, soup kitchens, and other charitable community programs since the program started in 2010.
"In seven seasons, North Dakota growers have donated more than 1.8 million pounds of produce to help address the issue of food insecurity in our state," Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring said.
The Hunger Free ND Garden Project was started by the North Dakota Department of Agriculture (NDDA) in partnership with the Great Plains Food Bank. The statewide project encourages home gardeners and commercial growers to plant extra produce each year for donation to charitable organizations across the state.
"The 2016 growing year alone brought in more than 468,000 pounds of produce," Goehring said. "Thanks to more growers, volunteers and community support, donations hit an all-time high this year."
At approximately four servings per pound, the 2016 donations provided more than 1.8 million servings of fruits and vegetables to help the wellbeing of North Dakota residents.
A three-acre sweet corn plot planted by NDDA contributed over 37,000 pounds to the project in 2016. Other sweet corn plot partners included: Lincoln-Oakes Nurseries, the Great Plains Food Bank, Missouri Valley Ag, North Dakota 4-H and North Dakota FFA.
Additional sponsors that helped make sweet corn harvest possible were: Spiffy Biffs, Cloverdale, Morton County 4-H, Royse's Twin City Produce, United Printing, USDA-ARS-PA Northern Great Plains Research Lab, Sara Lee/Bimbo Bakeries, Bismarck Parks & Rec, Farm Credit Services of Mandan and the Northern Plains Potato Growers Association.
Other partners in the project include: NDSU Extension Service, NDSU Master Gardeners, North Dakota FFA, Dakota College at Bottineau ~ Entrepreneurial Center for Horticulture, Northern Plains Sustainable Ag Society, The North Dakota Farmers Market and Growers Association, Healthy North Dakota, Creating a Hunger Free ND Coalition, and Pride of Dakota.
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