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Tate & Lyle postpones plant start

By Staff | Mar 27, 2009

Construction has been halted on a nearly completed ethanol plant in Fort Dodge.

Chris Olsen, a spokesman for London-based corn refiner Tate and Lyle, said the company has postponed work on the $260 million plant because of a struggling ethanol market.

“It is substantially complete but, even though we believe in the long-term viability of the market, we have temporarily suspended construction,” Olsen said.

The delay was announced Wednesday, and the 150 to 300 people building the plant will stop working.

Olsen said 90 Tate and Lyle employees will remain at the plant and continue with planning and training in preparation for the plant’s eventual opening.

Officials said in February the plant would be completed by the end of March. It is expected to produce 100 million gallons of ethanol a year.

The company says it will continue to monitor the markets to determine a good time to complete the work.

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