DU PONT ECOCHEM OPENS $20 MILLION PLANT IN ADELL, WIS.
DU PONT ECOCHEM OPENS $20 MILLION PLANT IN ADELL, WIS. ADELL, Wis., July 17 /PRNewswire/-- Ecological Chemical Products Co.
(Ecochem) today opened a $20 million commercial plant in Adell that will produce high-purity, natural lactic acid for food and pharmaceutical applications.
Lactic acid is used in emulsifiers for baked goods, as a preservative and flavoring agent, and in intravenous and dialysis solutions. Ecochem is a joint venture between Du Pont (NYSE: DD) and ConAgra, Inc. (NYSE: CAG) The plant is connected by pipeline to the adjacent Adell Whey Co., which collects cheese whey permeate from cheesemakers throughout a 100- mile radius. The lactic acid technology Ecochem will use originated with developments by ConAgra and the University of Wisconsin. Further fermentation enhancements by Bio-Technical Resources Inc. -- another Du Pont/ConAgra venture -- and Du Pont Engineering will enable Ecochem to pursue high-value, high-purity applications. "This new technology allows us to enter the lactic acid market with a natural, low cost product that offers a new standard of quality over synthetics," said Mark M. Montgomery, Ecochem president. Ecochem's manufacturing processes also offer several environmental advantages. For example: -- Raw materials are derived from natural, annually renewable resources; specifically, by-products of the cheesemaking process. -- No new wastes are generated during production. -- Many side streams are recycled, producing either useful or environmentally acceptable co-products. -- The Adell plant will employ about 30 people and will add more than $5 million annually to the local economy. "The cheese whey permeate this plant will use as a feedstock is coming from more than 10 cheese plants that buy milk from more than 500 Wisconsin family-owned dairy farms with more than 25,000 cows," said Montgomery. Ecochem is also developing economical polylactide polymers from cheese whey permeate or other renewable resources, such as side streams from the corn milling process. Polylactide polymers are degradable into water and carbon dioxide in the presence of moisture, air and common bacteria, and have shown promising results in enabling recycling. Polylactide polymers are targeted for use in food packaging, coated paperboard, nonwoven products, and numerous other applications. /delval/ -0- 7/17/92 /CONTACT: Susan Gaffney of Du Pont, 302-774-2698, or Lynn Phares of ConAgra, 402-595-4153/ (DD CAG) CO: Ecological Chemical Products Co.; Ecochem; Du Pont; ConAgra, Inc. ST: Wisconsin, Delaware IN: CHM SU: JVN
MJ-CC -- PH007 -- 0235 07/17/92 12:01 EDT
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|Date:||Jul 17, 1992|
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