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Published December 07, 2012, 12:47 PM

ND fertilizer plant plans celebrated at CHS annual meeting

During the annual meeting for CHS on Dec. 6 and 7 in Minneapolis, Minn., plans for the proposed nitrogen fertilizer manufacturing plant in Spiritwood, N.D., were confirmed and celebrated.

JAMESTOWN, N.D. —- During the annual meeting for CHS on Dec. 6 and 7 in Minneapolis, Minn., plans for the proposed nitrogen fertilizer manufacturing plant in Spiritwood, N.D., were confirmed and celebrated.

“We were pleased to hear that plans are progressing as promised and that leadership continues to support the project,” said North Dakota Farmers Union President Woody Barth, who attended the convention. “CHS is owned by farmers, ranchers and cooperatives across the United States and this new fertilizer plant will definitely fit their market and help North Dakotans.”

“When it comes to the producers and cooperatives who own us, and the customers we serve around the world, we must not only invest in the future, but make sure we provide relevant options for doing business with us,” said Carl Casale, CHS president and CEO. “In the last two years we’ve made three dozen major news announcements on investments and acquisitions on our owners’ behalf that strengthen our presence at home and round the world in energy, grains, processing and food ingredients.”

Casale and other leaders reported on 2012 results to more than 2,200 of the cooperative’s owners and other guests at the meeting.

In November, CHS reported record net income of $1.26 billion for fiscal 2012 (Sept. 1, 2011 through Aug. 31, 2012) on revenues of $40.6 billion, setting a new mark for U.S. agriculture cooperatives. CHS Chief Financial Officer David Kastelic reported that in 2012 CHS “made key investments in current business operations and in new ventures that will drive long-term success while maintaining a healthy balance sheet that will allow the company to continue investing in the future.”

Highlights for fiscal 2012 included:

•Plans to acquire sole ownership of the McPherson, Kan., refinery in which CHS has long been majority owner. The facility also is the site of a $555 million coker project. CHS also continues to invest in its Laurel, Mont., refinery, as well as strengthening refined fuels supply and distribution in the northern tier of the U.S. and growing its propane, lubricants and renewable fuels businesses.

•Expanded global commodities presence with new offices in South Korea, Singapore and Paraguay, along with grain origination and export acquisitions and joint ventures in the Black Sea region and South America.

•Proposed construction of the first CHS nitrogen fertilizer manufacturing facility, planned for Spiritwood, N.D., and an investment in a Texas clean fuels project that includes sole access to 700,000 tons of urea.

•Acquisition of an Israel-based soy foods and food ingredients business with two locations in Israel, one in China and one in Nebraska. CHS also acquired a Creston, Iowa, soybean crushing plant focused on soy flour to supply the company’s existing soy protein foods business.

•Stronger cooperative system alignment, as five co-ops and a Canadian firm chose to join the CHS Country Operations retail business unit and CHS partnered with several local co-ops on a variety of grain, crop nutrients and energy projects.

NDFU sent several representatives to the meeting including Barth, the board of directors and staff.

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