Laying of the foundation stone for a €100-million investment at the Pischelsdorf site in Tullnerfeld|Lower AustriaDatum: 16.04.2018
The fruit, starch and sugar group AGRANA today laid the foundation stone for a second wheat starch production plant at the site of its Pischelsdorf biorefinery in Lower Austria in the presence of Provincial Governor Johanna Mikl-Leitner. Through the investment of around € 100 million, AGRANA will be doubling its wheat starch production and, as a result, increasing its total annual processing capacity at the Pischelsdorf site, from around 800,000 tonnes at present, to over a million tonnes, and also creating 45 new jobs at the facility.
“The plant expansion project will safeguard the long-term competitiveness of the Pischelsdorf site and is in response to increasing demand, particularly from the paper industry due to the growing need for packaging materials for online traders,” highlighted AGRANA CEO Johann Marihart.
With around 200 employees, the Pischelsdorf site also houses Austria’s only bioethanol facility in addition to its wheat starch plant. The close integration of both plants enables the cereals processed to be utilised to an extent of 100 percent. After extracting wheat starch and gluten, the remaining unutilised fractions of the raw materials are used in the production of bioethanol and the GMO-free, protein-rich, animal feed ActiProt. This product substitutes approximately 200,000 tonnes of the EU’s annual imports of genetically-modified soya grits from overseas. The last production step involves capturing high-purity CO2, which is extracted from the fermentation tanks of the bioethanol plant and liquefied by the industrial gas company Air Liquide. Consequently, several top-quality products are manufactured from a single commodity. “We are very proud of our Pischelsdorf biorefinery. This is a shining example of total resource utilisation and plays a major role in achieving our aim of establishing a closed business cycle,” Marihart adds.
Image Caption (from left): Chairman of the AGRANA Supervisory Board Erwin Hameseder, Provincial Governor Lower Austria Johanna Mikl-Leitner, General Secretary Josef Plank of the Federal Ministry of Sustainability and Tourism and AGRANA CEO Johann Marihart (fotocredit: AGRANA/Martina Draper)
AGRANA adds value to agricultural commodities to produce top quality foodstuffs and numerous industrial upstream products. Around 8,900 personnel working at 57 production facilities worldwide generate consolidated revenues of around EUR 2.6 billion. The Group was founded in 1988 and is today the leading sugar company in Central and Eastern Europe as well as being a key producer, in the Starch segment, of special products and bioethanol in Europe. In addition, AGRANA is the global leader in fruit preparations and a major producer of fruit juice concentrates in Europe.