Chamberlin, SD (Sept. 9, 2017) – POET CEO Jeff Broin was inducted into the South Dakota Hall of Fame today for his role in taking a single bioprocessing plant in Scotland, SD and building that business into the largest biofuel producer in the world.
Broin, of Dell Rapids, was recognized as “Pioneer of Biofuels” in a ceremony at the Hall of Fame headquarters in Chamberlain.
Broin was among 10 state leaders formally inducted Saturday.
“This recognition is a true honor, and I’m proud to share this day with so many amazing South Dakota leaders,” Broin said.
“Biofuels are an important industry for South Dakota, not only for the direct impact, but also for the many indirect effects that flow through our economy. Of everything we’ve accomplished at POET, I am most proud of how we have helped grow prosperity for farmers and rural communities. This honor is for the thousands of people at POET and in the broader biofuels industry who have helped change the world.”
As CEO of POET, Jeff Broin built the company from a 1 million gallon-per-year facility in 1987 into the largest biofuels producer in the world today, with 1.8 billion gallons of annual fuel production and 10 billion pounds of high-protein animal feed, among other products.
He also launched one of the first cellulosic biofuel plants in the world with technology developed at POET’s laboratories and its pilot plant in South Dakota.
“Our mission to ‘Champion a Culture of Excellence: One Act at a Time’ is identified throughout Jeff Broin's journey,” Hall of Fame Board Member Miles Beacom said. “His achievements today and as they continue in the future will make the South Dakota Hall of Fame a household word to inspire, lead and mentor all ages in South Dakota.”
Looking to the future, Broin plans to grow biofuels production across the Midwest, the country and the world while also finding new and improved co-products to replace even more fossil-based products. Growth in bioprocessing is also the key to overcoming challenges in agriculture, he said.
“Farmers today face challenges we haven’t seen for 30 years. We’re already looking at another farm crisis.” Broin said.
“History must be our guide, and history shows that biofuels have been the only significant growth market for ag products in decades. If we are going to turn around the decline in farm income, land value and crop prices, it will have to be done by increasing biofuels as a percentage of the US and world fuel supply. South Dakota can lead the way.”
In South Dakota alone, POET has created significant economic impacts, both direct and indirect on an annual basis.