I wanted to touch on the international oilseed market.
International opportunities can hardly be measured. Jatropha , Palm, Milletia in Central and South America is going to be a very strong market. Because our processors are capable of refining all vegetable oils, rendered animal fats and recycled fryer grease into biodiesel they have significant value in almost every country in the world. The price per gallon savings on biodiesel is usually higher internationally due to the fact that fuel is not as heavily subsidized abroad. The international oilseed feedstock market is in its infancy and the research is quite broad one example specifically is GXE’s Jatropha report focused solely on Jatropha Curcas. The common protocol is to press the oil seed feedstock using a seed press. Raw oil most always needs to be run through a filter Depending on the feedstock it may also need to be degummed prior to conversion. We can extrapolate from these reports that there are many strong indicators of a greater need for a small scale mid-market level refinery outside the US. We can analyze the amount of existing oil crop plantations there are and the projected devolping plantations (See page 25-28 GXE report) There is a global “gold rush” happening to fulfill the worlds biodiesel demands especially with government mandates being implemented a very rapid rate. This rush started in Africa and Southeast Asia, according the GXE report and is “making it’s way west” to Central and South American countries. According to the GXE report an estimated 49% of plantations in 2013 will be under 1000 Hectares. (Ha) 21% of will be R&D/research plantations. These are prime targets for small scale refineries. This will make up 70% of the projected 13M Ha, (9.1 million Ha) If we multiply this by the average yield of 800 gallons per Ha this mean there are an estimated 7.2 billion gallons of Jatropha Oil that will need refining from plantations that are smaller than 1000 ha. each where our mobile unit is a perfect fit.
(Please keep in mind that both GFE and UBA have achieved as much as 2000 gallons per hectare on their plantations)
If we look at the infrastructure of these plantations we can determine that:
1.) A portion of these large plantations are either owned or managed by domestic entities, such as GFE Glogal, and GCE farms. I spoke with Steven Francis a while back who is the CEO of McDonald Francis Farms, who is just now expanding into the Global Jatropha Market (they were mainly camelina) and he told me that, although they own a very large 2 million gallon year (mgy) refinery, most of these companies do not and can not afford the 10+ million dollars it costs to build one. So they are forced to sell the Crude raw oil.
2.) The rest of these plantations appear to be made up of very small farms, some have formed co-ops, and these farms would directly benefit from having a small scale refinery.
Another interesting, and still (relatively new) business model is the Multi-purpose Real Estate market; micro investments in land plots suitable for development years down the road. In the mean time Jatropha plantations are implemented and a portion of the proceeds go back to the investor. These companies are also expressing interest in refining their own fuel, since they receive double the return.
If you look at the GXE report, the number of Hectares planted is expected to grow from 5 million in 2010 to 13 million in 2015.
These are just the Jatropha based studies. There are many more opportunities with the rising popularity of Maringa and other plant / seed oil feedstocks and the monetization of WVO in other countries as well.
My guess is there is a tremendous need for our processors in Indonesia and Malaysia. Comprised of over 14,000 separate islands they are now the world’s leader in biodiesel feedstock (raw oil) production. They harvest the oilseed, press the oil and sell this feedstock to China. China then refines it into biodiesel for internal consumption or for sale to Europe Mobile refineries are the missing link in this chain. Feedstock + Mobile Refineries = Fuel. To construct a centralized large scale refinery on one of the 14,000 islands, then build the necessary infrastructure to get the feedstock to said refinery and the infrastructure to distribute finished biodiesel back to the islands is simply unfeasible. With our self-contained, mobile units these challenges disappear. This is but one case of many, i.e. all of Southeast Asia, Africa, Haiti, Brazil, Australia