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Former Nu-Energie biodiesel plant up for auction

Sharon Hayes • Mar 7, 2010 at 12:00 AM

SURGOINSVILLE — The former Nu-Energie biodiesel plant in the Phipps Bend Industrial Park is headed for the auction block.

The 18,634-square-foot facility on 3.3 acres will be sold to the highest bidder at 11 a.m. Wednesday. The auction will take place onsite in the industrial park.

Prospective buyers can inspect the facility Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The plant opened in 2008 and could produce nearly 5 million gallons of biodiesel a year.

Hawkins County businessman Brian Hullette and his business partner Joel Day started the company in 2007 as the region’s first biodiesel manufacturing plant. The project was expected to produce 15 million gallons of biodiesel a year and fill a demand for the clean-burning fuel made from natural, renewable resources such as vegetable oil and soybean oil.

However, the biodiesel industry has suffered in recent months due to the global economic downturn and falling prices for biodiesel.

In addition, Congress failed to reinstate the U.S. biodiesel tax credit, a $1 per gallon subsidy that expired on Dec. 31, 2009.

Maas Companies Inc. will be conducting the lender-ordered auction. The real estate, biodiesel equipment and laboratory pieces will be sold as three independent tracts and will not be offered as an entirety.

For more information about the auction visit www.maascompanies.com and type in the keywords: biodiesel plant.

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