Shell Rock Soy Processing to supply soy oil to Phillips 66

The Iowa-based start-up will power renewable diesel, sustainable energy markets.

Shell Rock Soy Processing (SRSP), LLC has signed an agreement with Phillips 66 to supply soy oil for sustainable fuel production, including renewable diesel. This innovative partnership with the petroleum industry creates new opportunities for Iowa farmers. 

“A huge shift is underway in the energy industry that’s driving demand for soy oil,” said Mike Kinley, CEO of Mid-Iowa Cooperative (MIC), a developing partner of SRSP, in a news release. “Working with Phillips 66 is a key step to help Iowa farmers benefit from the next level of sustainable energy production.” 

When SRSP becomes operational in late 2022, it will produce around 4,000 barrels of soybean oil per day. Phillips 66 has an agreement to purchase 100% of the plant’s production of soybean oil that can be used to make renewable fuels. 

“This strategic investment expands our reach into the renewable diesel value chain and provides secure feedstock,” said Brian Mandell, Phillips 66 executive vice president of marketing and commercial, in a news release. “It also reflects our commitment to play an important role in a lower-carbon energy future.

Renewable diesel is chemically similar to petroleum diesel, but it’s 100% renewable and sustainable. This direct substitute for diesel fuel is refined from lower carbon and renewable materials, including soy oil. 

A variety of energy companies, including Phillips 66, are retrofitting existing oil refineries to produce renewable fuels. Phillips 66 unveiled plans last year to convert its Rodeo Refinery in the San Francisco area into one of the world’s largest renewable fuels facilities, capable of producing 800 million gallons per year of renewable diesel, renewable gasoline and sustainable jet fuel from used cooking oils, fats, greases, vegetable oils, and other feedstocks. If approved, the project would be completed in early 2024.

“Energy companies are sprinting towards renewable diesel production,” Kinley said. “SRSP will help Iowa soybean farmers power these new opportunities.” 

Diversifying the local ag economy 

When operational, SRSP will crush approximately 40 million bushels of soybeans annually, or 110,000 bushels daily. In addition to the soybean oil, SRSP will produce more than 900,000 tons per year of soybean meal and hulls for livestock feed.

Local cooperatives will originate soybeans from farmers, and SRSP will buy soybeans directly from farmers. SRSP’s close proximity to the Iowa Northern Railway will allow railcars to be unloaded with soybeans and loaded with soybean meal and soybean oil. 

SRSP will bring Butler County and surrounding areas into the center of the global ag economy while diversifying the local economy. “We’ve already been getting calls from job seekers wanting to know if SRSP is hiring,” Kinley said. “We’re excited to make SRSP a reality that will benefit the region for decades to come.”

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