A Farmer’s Tale of Biodiesel

John Davis

High Plains JournalThere’s a great feature story in the latest issue of the High Plains Journal that tells the story of how one Kansas Farmer took the journey in deciding to grow his own biodiesel crop… even refining his harvest into his own green fuel.

Check out these excerpts:

Luke Jaeger was fed up with high fuel prices.

A few years ago, as he sat at his desk in his home near Minneola, Kan., Jaeger decided fuel prices were crimping his bottom line and it was time for a different approach to filling his equipment tanks.

Jaeger went online and searched the Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension Service files, talked with seed salesmen and visited with biodiesel specialists to plan his farm-scale biodiesel facility. But it wasn’t until the first seeds were planted that Jaeger’s vision of energy independence began to take a definite shape.

Jaeger purchased canola seed from a Nickerson, Kan., dealer and planted his first 60 acres last fall.

But, growing his own oil crop was just the first step in Jaeger’s plan. He also committed to building his own oil seed crushing and fuel refinery right there on his farm.

“We put in two 10-ton crushers, and the goal is to provide crushing for other area farmers who will grow winter canola or sunflowers and bring them to us to crush and then refine the oil into biodiesel,” Jaeger said. “They can bring us their seeds and leave with biodiesel.” The family is in the permitting phase of construction now and has joined the National Biodiesel Board. Eventually they will have all of the proper permits to process biodiesel and their product will meet American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards.

The article is an interesting story of Jaeger’s work and a good read… in my humble opinion.

Biodiesel, Ethanol