Blackhawk Biofuels quickly earns key designation

DANVILLE – Less than eight months after starting production in Danville, Blackhawk Biofuels, LLC has earned BQ-9000 Producer status from the National Biodiesel Board and the National Biodiesel Accreditation Committee.

"Today the petroleum industry is demanding biodiesel from BQ-9000 Producers," Gary Haer, vice president of sales and marketing of Renewable Energy Group, said in a news release. The company is a national biodiesel production and marketing company based in Ames, Iowa. "This certification distinguishes this strategically located, multiple feedstock facility as a high-quality fuel provider for petroleum distributors in Illinois, the greater Midwest region and distributors across the country."

Blackhawk Biofuels, a member of the Renewable Energy Group network, is a state-of-the-art biodiesel production facility, which produces 45 million gallons per year. It has 27 employees. It recently completed construction to upgrade facilities to offer cutting-edge technology for producing high-quality biodiesel from a variety of fats and oils.

"Upon completion of construction, this facility almost immediately began producing biodiesel which met REG-9000TM biodiesel product quality specifications which exceed ASTM (American Society for Testing Methods) specifications," Haer said, adding that Renewable Energy Group is responsible for all REG-9000TM branded biodiesel marketed from the Danville facility. ASTM specifications refer to the fuel itself.

"This BQ-9000 Producer status is the ultimate reward for the staff who operate this facility and the technology team who brought recent manufacturing upgrades to completion," Haer continued. "Most importantly, we know that BQ-9000 accreditation means consistent, efficient production of large volumes of high-quality fuel to help address the nation's renewable energy demands."

"The staff at Danville – the production staff, load-out staff, office staff and the laboratory team – have done a great job in bringing this facility into this status so quickly," added Alicia Clancy, Renewable Energy Group's corporate affairs coordinator. "Renewable Energy Group looks forward to working with the petroleum industry members in Illinois and Indiana and throughout the Midwest and the nation to offer them high-quality fuel from this BQ-9000 producer plant."

The National Biodiesel Accreditation Committee awarded Blackhawk's BQ-9000 Producer status on a provisional basis based on the Renewable Energy Group's network's quality control production processes and the facility's documentation systems. Upon an on-site audit expected in early fall, the full BQ-9000 Producer status will be intact. Requirements for fuel bids from BQ-9000 Producers will be met with biodiesel from the Blackhawk facility under their current status.

BQ-9000 is a voluntary quality-assurance program that helps companies improve fuel testing. It is comprehensive, including procedures for fuel handling and management throughout the distribution system, all the way to the customer's fuel tank. Accreditation demonstrates quality-control processes are in place at the facility that ensures biodiesel produced there will meet the ASTM D6751 specification for biodiesel.

Biodiesel from Blackhawk Biofuels meets REG-9000 specification, which exceeds the ASTM D6751 industry standard for biodiesel. Every lot of biodiesel marketed by Renewable Energy Group is accompanied by a Certificate of Analysis outlining biodiesel quality. Blackhawk Biofuels is the seventh plant for which Renewable Energy Group markets fuel that has received BQ-9000 Producer status.

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