But whether Farm to Fuel will focus on cellulosic ethanol, conventional ethanol or other types of biofuel is something that will be determined by the market, McElroy says, adding that Bronson has called cellulosic ethanol the wave of the future. If companies that serve as potential investors don’t agree with Bronson, the effort will be stopped dead in its tracks, McElroy says.
Because cellulosic ethanol is still in its infancy and no commercial cellulosic ethanol facilities exist in the country, its unchartered waters have caused some companies to choose the conventional ethanol route.
Fort Lauderdale-based Losonoco Inc., which originally was founded as a cellulosic ethanol company, also was awarded a $2.5 million grant, which will be used to produce conventional ethanol. The company plans to refurbish an old ethanol facility in Polk County. Don Markley, chief operating officer, says he hopes the plant will be producing corn-based ethanol by May or June of next year.
“Cellulosic ethanol needs to be proven to be economically viable,” Markley says.
Editor Elizabeth Ashby contributed to this report