By LYDIA BAULER
FOR THE COURIER

FOSTORIA — Fostoria’s longtime legacy in agribusiness will soon be on display.

Three city agribusinesses, as well as Kalmbach Feeds of Upper Sandusky, will be featured during the Ohio AgriBusiness Association’s Ohio Grain Processor’s Tour on April 10.

The day will begin with presentations by Archer Daniels Midland, 608 Findlay St.; POET Biorefining, 2111 Sandusky St.; Mennel Milling Co., 320 Findlay St.; and Kalmbach Feeds.

The day will culminate with a tour of POET Biorefining and Mennel Milling.

According to Janice Welsheimer, director of educational programs for the Ohio AgriBusiness Association, the event aims to bring people together within the industry to learn from each other and share best practices.

Participants will hear from “bean crusher” Archer Daniels Midland about its history and how it does what it does. ADM buys soybeans from area farmers and elevators, which it turns into soybean meal for livestock producers.

The company plans to highlight plant safety as one of its “best practices.”

Attendees who tour POET Biorefining will learn about its history and the process it uses to create products, including byproducts, said Commodity Manager Brad Pope.

The biorefinery, which will be celebrating 10 years in Fostoria in September, produces ethanol from corn.

“We purchase roughly 25 million bushels locally a year and process that into ethanol,” said Pope. “A lot of the byproducts used to make animal feed are also sold locally.”

“We will be stressing safety as one of our best practices,” said Pope. “We want to see everyone leave work the same way they came, so we want to create an environment where people can do their work and see that happen.”

Mennel Milling Co., which has been a fixture in Fostoria since 1886, will be taking visitors on a tour through the flour milling facility, from receiving wheat to shipping products out. Plant managers and superintendents will be on hand to share details and answer questions, said Jay McAllister, grain merchandiser with Mennel.

“We’re industry leaders in that department,” said McAllister. “We have a lot of equipment and people working on research. We share a lot of that information with others in the industry to just get it out there.”

Participants must register by Tuesday and space is limited. Registration is $99 for members of the Ohio AgriBusiness Association or $150 for non-members.

For more information, contact Welsheimer at 614-326-7520 or e-mail jwelsheimer@oaba.net.

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