This page last updated December 7, 2000

At the May 21, 1998, public meeting, the Air Resources Board awarded grants from the Rice Straw Demonstration Project Fund to the following three projects:.

"Preprocessing of Rice Straw for Multiple Products" by Anderson Hay & Grain Co., Inc. for $500,000;

"Bioboard Plant for Colusa, California" by FiberTech USA, Inc. for $750,000;

"Production of Fermented Animal Feeds from Sacramento Valley Rice Straw: Prototype and Commercial Pilot" by MBI International for $820,000.

Summaries of Projects Awarded Grants:

Title: "Preprocessing of Rice Straw for Multiple Products"

Applicant: Anderson Hay & Grain Co., Inc.

Grant Amount: $500,000

Project time: 3 years

Anderson Hay & Grain proposes to develop the infrastructure necessary for handling large quantities of rice straw by using their extensive experience in establishing such an infrastructure for grass straw in Oregon. Anderson also proposes to use rice straw to make erosion control blankets; to develop business and fumigation protocols to export rice straw for use as livestock feed in Asia; to develop the preprocessing methodologies to prepare rice straw for paper and board applications; and to identify potentially large-scale users of rice straw based on the premise that preprocessed straw would be more efficient to use for commercial-scale applications.

Title: "Bioboard Plant for Colusa, California"

Applicant: FiberTech

Grant Amount: $750,000

Project time: 9 months

FiberTech plans to install a manufacturing line to make particle board out of rice straw. The Bioboard would be used in the same applications as wood-based particle board, but FiberTech plans to target niche markets. FiberTech already has a 14,000 square foot facility and eight acres of straw storage in the Colusa Industrial Park. FiberTech plans to be in production during the 4th quarter of 1998 and expects to be commercially viable within six months after start-up. This first facility is projected to use between 25,000 and 40,000 tons of rice straw annually; several more facilities are planned in the future.

Title: "Production of Fermented Animal Feeds from Sacramento Valley Rice Straw: Prototype and Commercial Pilot"

Applicant: MBI International

Grant Amount: $820,000

Project time: 1 year

MBI proposes to process rice straw into a high-value animal feed for domestic dairy and beef cattle. The new feed is expected to provide 90-95 percent of the energy value of feed corn at 50-70 percent of the cost of similar feeds that are now on the market. MBI's technology is based upon MBI's proprietary Ammonia Fiber Explosion (AFEX) and fermentation technologies. The value added to the rice straw as a result of the processing MBI proposes includes enhanced digestibility and added food value. MBI proposes to build a mobile pilot plant, optimize the straw conversion process, perform live animal feeding trials, and produce the engineering plans for the first full-scale production facility. If commercial operation is feasible, MBI would build a full-scale plant which would consume from 160,000 to 330,000 tons of straw per year.

Questions about the Rice Fund may be directed to:

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