Assistant Plant Manager Position Available at Louis Dreyfus Company

Louis Dreyfus Company is a leading merchant and processor of agricultural goods, leveraging its global reach and extensive asset network to deliver for our customers around the world.

The Company is currently seeking an Assistant Plant Manager to support and assist management of plant operations and support in developing/administering production policies and programs, for a soybean crushing and biodiesel plant in Claypool, IN.

In addition, this position also ensures that standards in the following areas are met: emergency management, maintenance, security, facility up-keep, housekeeping and customer service.

Primary Role & Responsibilities:

  • Assist in establishing performance objectives for operation, budgets and schedules, and ensures all required safety and environmental regulations are complied with, while producing the quantity and quality of the product required.
  • Participates in long-range planning decisions, recommends capital improvements, cost reduction improvements.
  • Develop and monitor production schedules to ensure that completed products are shipped on time and in accordance with customer expectations.
  • Oversee the impact of operations on the environment by monitoring quality of plant effluents and emissions, coordinates efforts with Area Managers to ensure plant-wide compliance.
  • Ensure effective communication throughout the facility; including with regards to Company policies and assures understanding, and promotes teamwork and implements beneficial training methods.
  • Assist with employee development, personnel development plans, performance appraisal process
  • Assist with staffing and recruitment efforts


  • At least 3 years of experience managing an oilseed crushing or biodiesel facility outside of our organization OR at least 2 years of management experience at our Company oilseed plants
  • High school diploma/GED
  • Valid Driver’s License
  • Knowledge of applicable government regulations, personnel policies, etc.
  • Knowledge of applicable state and federal regulations regarding EEO, safety, health and environmental management, etc.
  • Knowledge necessary to accomplish the safe and timely start-up of a processing plant
  • Ability to effectively lead Production, Maintenance, Laboratory, Utility, Environmental, Health and Safety Managers and Team Leaders by exhibiting high ethical standards, engendering trust and empowering subordinates.
  • Ability to climb stairs and ladders as well as work at heights, manage confined space entry, withstand extended periods of walking and standing; and move manufacturing materials, products and equipment of 50 pounds or more, which requires bending and lifting

Interested Applicants: Please click on the link below to apply for the role:

China to Increase Imports of U.S. Oil and Grains

China will import record volumes of U.S. oil and is likely to ship more U.S. soy after Beijing signaled to state-run refiners and grains purchasers they should buy more to help ease tensions between the two top economies, trade sources said on Wednesday.

China pledged at the weekend to increase imports from its top trading partner to avert a trade war that could damage the global economy. Energy and commodities were high on Washington’s list of products for sale.

The United States is also seeking better access for imports of genetically modified crops into China under the deal.

China is the world’s top importer of both oil and soy, and already buys significant volumes of both from the United States. It is unclear how much more Chinese importers will buy from the United States than they would have otherwise, but any additional shipments would contribute to cutting the trade surplus, as demanded by Trump.

China’s state grain stockpiler Sinograin returned this week to the U.S. soybean market for the first time since early April, two sources said.

Soybeans are America’s top agricultural export to China, worth $12 billion last year, and the absence of Chinese buyers from the market had left U.S. farmers wondering if their biggest buyers was going to want their next harvest.

Sinograin enquired about prices for U.S. soybeans this week, traders said, which market participants interpreted as a sign that government curbs on buying American goods had been lifted

“Sinograin is in the market today asking U.S. suppliers to make offers for shipment of old-crop as well as new-crop beans for shipment August onwards,” said a source who works at a private soybean crushing company in China.

“It is a clear message to even private companies that it is OK now to import U.S. beans.”

Two other sources briefed on the matter said Chinese state grain trader Cofco would be permitted to buy U.S. soybeans again, ending restrictions imposed by Beijing as trade tensions rose. The sources declined to be named as they are not authorized to speak to the media.


U.S. Soybean Crush Expected to Exceed Last Year

Thanks to production issues in Argentina, U.S. soybean producers are experiencing higher soybean crush levels when compared to recent years. USDA projects domestic crush is up 3.6% from this past marketing year. Additionally, the second half of this year could be even greater at 3.7% higher than last year.

The U.S. Census Bureau estimates March 2018 crush at 182.2 million bu. — 13% greater than March 2017. Improved crush margin is incentivizing greater crush in the U.S. Since Argentina is facing poor soybean production — down 654 million bu. from last year according to Todd Hubbs at the University of Illinois — there could be increased need for domestic soybean crush.

Soybean oil prices, on the other hand, are weaker as stocks grew 0.8% compared to March of last year. Oil prices decreased from 31.6 cents per pound in early February to 29.5 cents per pound over last month in Decatur, Ill., Hubbs says. Crush strength is heavily dependent on soybean meal markets—which are growing rapidly because of Argentina’s production problems.

“Soybean meal use needs to continue to build on recent progress to meet or exceed the current crust projection,” Hubbs adds.

April’s WASDE report increased domestic soybean meal consumption by 250,000 tons and exports by 100,000 tons. That’s a 4.5% increase over last year. Domestic increases are largely due to livestock production expansion over this past year. USDA projects exports at 7.8% greater than last year and the last half of the year could be 14% larger than the second half of this past marketing year.

“While soybean exports continue to disappoint, soybean crush levels maintain a pace to set record levels of use associated with crush this marketing year,” Hubbs says. “Domestic use of soybean meal appears set to maintain support for strong crush margins.”

Mato Grosso March Soybean Crush Hits All-Time High

Soybean crushing in Brazil’s largest producing soybean state hit an all-time high of 913,500 mt in March on high availability of the bean as the harvest work was completed mid-April, IMEA said in a note published late Monday.

The March crush was up 10.77% on the month and up 10.68% compared to March 2017.

IMEA expects the strong pace to continue for the rest of the season, with the total crush for 2017/18 anticipated at 9.25 million mt, just under last year’s all-time high of 9.37 million mt.

Total production for the state is estimated at 32.17 million mt, an all-time high and up 2.3% from last year’s record.

However, state end-stocks will halve during the season to just 220,000 mt as exports and domestic demand are up 2.8%, driven by healthy bean and meal prices and a rise in international demand.

The 2017/18 soybean harvest in Mato Grosso was one of the first to be completed in Brazil and progress was completed by April 5, Brazil-based consultants Agrural said at the end of last week, with the entire country currently at 85%.

High international meal prices also propelled the US March crush to an all-time high of 171.858 million bushels (4.7 million mt) of soybeans, up 11.8% on the month, data released by National Oilseed Processors Association (NOPA) showed Monday.

China Soybean Tariffs to Hit South America’s Crush

South America’s global soymeal market share will decline if China taxes US imports of soybeans, as US crush margins would widen, increasing meal exports and undercutting its southern neighbour, Rabobank said Thursday.

The proposed tariffs on US soybeans by China would have “severe” implications on global trade, the Dutch bank said, shifting China’s soybean demand – the largest net importer – from the US to South America.

China imports 90% of its soybean needs, of which 34% are sourced from the US, and Chinese crushers would not be able to pass on the inflated costs.

Reduced demand for US beans, partially offset by rising exports to the EU and Southeast Asia, would drag down US prices, while American farmers would opt to plant more corn and fewer beans, the bank said.

However, the fall in US bean prices would widen local crush margins and increase US crush rates, as the country becomes a more dominant soymeal exporter fuelled by an increasing global demand for protein.

Meanwhile, a rise in Chinese demand for South American beans would have a bullish effect on local bean prices, while global soymeal prices will be capped by the rise in cheaper American soymeal exports.

South American soymeal prices will have to rise to ensure a viable crush, “but this will weaken the price-competitive advantages of South America as the leading soymeal exporter,” the Dutch bank said.

Longer term, the Dutch bank expects an expansion in crush capacity in the US, EU and South-East Asia, with limited growth in South America and China, while South America, the EU and China would each increase soybean plantings.

Recap: 86th Oil Mill Operators Short Course … April 8-10 … Indianapolis, IN

Oilseed processing industry professionals from the United States, Canada, and Europe convened for the 86th annual Oil Mill Operators Short Course, April 8-10, at the Westin Indianapolis hotel in Indianapolis, IN.

The one-and-a-half day course hosted by Texas A&M University’s Process Engineering Research & Development Center (PERDC) and IOMSA covered topics such as separator application and maintenance, the utilization of expanders on pre-press cake, cooling water best practices, extractor design, smart manufacturing, roller mill monitoring, press design, and dust hazard analysis.

In addition, the class toured Separators Inc., Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Museum, and also attended a Minor League Baseball game between the Indianapolis Indians and Toledo Mud Hens.

For more information and photos from the 86th Oil Mill Operators Short Course, see the upcoming May/June issue of Oil Mill Gazetteer.

For more information on upcoming Texas A&M PERDC short courses, click here.

Zeeland Farm Services Affiliate to purchase Iowa Soybean Facility

An affiliate of Zeeland Farm Services Inc. plans to purchase a soybean facility, soy flour mill, grain elevator, and non-GMO soybean inventories in Creston, IA.

Executives with ZFS Creston LLC, an affiliate of the Zeeland-based agricultural and transportation company, say the acquisition from farming cooperative CHS Inc. places the company in the “rich and storied” agricultural powerhouse of Iowa, Cliff Meeuwsen, president of ZFS Creston, said in a statement this week.

“We are looking forward to getting to know the Creston community, recovering jobs, increasing the opportunities for soybean growers around Creston, and growing the breadth of specialty products for our customers,” Meeuwsen stated.

According to the release, the new facility in Iowa can produce soybean meal, soy white flakes, soy flour and soybean oil.

The company plans to hire new employees for the facility, but didn’t disclose how many jobs would be added or when production will start.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

ADM, Cargill Announce Soybean Joint Venture in Egypt

Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) has agreed to form a soybean joint venture in Egypt with fellow U.S. agricultural merchant Cargill to take advantage of strong demand for edible oil and livestock feed.

The agreement will give ADM joint ownership of Cargill’s soy crushing facility in Borg Al-Arab on the Mediterranean coast, the companies said in a statement on Monday.

A source close to the deal had earlier said that the firms would be establishing an oilseed joint venture in Egypt.

Cargill is already in the process of expanding daily crushing capacity at the facility from 3,000 tonnes to 6,000 tonnes, an investment it had estimated at $100 million when it announced the expansion in 2015.

“Egypt is an important market where demand for high-quality soybean meal and oil is outpacing the rest of the world,” John Grossmann, ADM’s president, EMEA oilseeds crush, said in the statement.

The financial terms of the joint venture, which is expected to begin operations in mid-2018 following a regulatory review, were not disclosed.

The joint venture will be managed as a standalone entity, with equal ownership between ADM and Cargill, the groups said.

In addition to the production site, the partnership will also cover related commercial and support activities, including a Switzerland-based merchandising operation for supplying soybeans to the crush plant, the companies said.

The venture will not include Cargill’s grain business and port terminal in Dekheila, or the ADM-Medsofts joint venture at the port of Alexandria, they said.

A fast-growing population has fueled food demand in Egypt, making the Arab state reliant on imports of crops like wheat, corn and soybeans for human staples like bread and for livestock feed.

The partnership between ADM and Cargill in Egypt comes as global agricultural merchants are reviewing operations after several years of abundant supply and low volatility squeezed profits on buying, selling and shipping crops.

ADM Plans $196 Million Expansion in Clinton, IA

The Archer-Daniels-Midland (ADM) grain processing plant in Clinton will undergo a $196 million modernization and expansion project to increase manufacturing capacity and help the century-old facility remain competitive.

The Chicago-based ADM is planning to update its Clinton wet mill, a facility built in the early 1900s that ADM acquired in 1982, according to documents from the Iowa Economic Development Authority, which approved incentives for the project Friday.

The project will include an investment of $146.5 million in new machinery and equipment as well as a new $39.1 million building expansion. It also includes $2.8 million in site preparation and $7.8 million in other machinery and equipment.

The economic development authority’s board approved $8.257 million in tax credits from its High Quality Jobs program. The project is expected to retain 42 jobs at a qualifying wage of $15.99 per hour.

“ADM is a proud member of the Clinton community, with operations spanning corn processing, grain origination and storage, and river transportation,” ADM spokeswoman Jackie Anderson said. “We are solidifying our presence in Clinton by investing to rebuild our 100-year-old Clinton wet mill.”

She said the mill is part of a corn processing complex that produces a wide range of products, including corn sweeteners and starches, beverage alcohol, corn oil, enzymes, ethanol, animal feed and other food ingredients.

The state assistance includes $7 million in an investment tax credit and $1.257 million in a sales, service and use tax refund.

State documents show ADM had considered closing the plant about 18 years ago because of its physical age and modernization needs. “The corn wet milling process begins at the mill as it separates the corn kernel into its four individual components. Without the mill, none of the other operating departments can operate,” the documents say.

“We appreciate the support of the State of Iowa and the City of Clinton, and we look forward to calling Clinton home of our newest, most modern corn wet mill,” Anderson said.

The plant employs more than 750 people, she added.

The city of Clinton has agreed to match the state award with a tax abatement, but the amount has not been determined.

Andy Sokolovich, the Clinton Regional Development Corp.’s existing industry manager, said the organization is “excited to support ADM” and thankful for the state’s partnership. “A wet-mill is the heart of their production process. As one of our largest employers, we are excited to share in their continued success,” he said.

Work on the modernization project is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2018 and be completed in the first quarter of 2022.

In a statement, Iowa Sen. Rita Hart, D-Wheatland, praised the investment by ADM. “This is good news for Clinton. ADM has been in Clinton since 1982. Modernizing and automating the Clinton facility will help the company remain competitive and, hopefully, add more good jobs down the road.”

Since 2003, ADM has received a total of about $19 million in state incentives for its operations in Clinton and Cedar Rapids. The projects created created a total of 181 jobs.

Register Now for the 86th Annual Oil Mill Operators Short Course, April 8-10, in Indianapolis, IN

Texas A&M University’s Process Engineering Research & Development Center and IOMSA are holding the 86th Annual Oil Mill Operators Short Course, April 8-10, 2018, at The Westin Indianapolis Hotel in Indianapolis, IN.

The one-and-a-half-day course will cover a wide variety of topics relevant to oilseed processing industry professionals.

According to Rich Clough, course organizer, “the goal of the short course is to present the tools and information needed to improve operations by increasing efficiency and optimizing human and plant assets.”

To view the entire schedule and register for the 86th Annual Oil Mill Operators Short Course, go to The cost of the course is $150.

If you have any questions, contact Rich Clough (979-862-2262, or Cyndi Casanova (979-845-2741,