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Ethanol Plant

Sparta, WI: (Mar-18-08) Coulee Area Renewable Energy LLC. (CARE) brought a lawsuit against Century Foods International, over the proposed buyout of the 83.7-acre Sparta ethanol plant site. CARE brought charges in Monroe County Circuit Court in December 2007, claiming that Century Foods and Hormel Foods Corp., breached terms of an October 2007 settlement that called for Century Foods to buy CARE's Sparta site at an agreed price. The lawsuit alleged that both the companies breached the agreement by insisting on a new condition that stipulated that CARE board members agree not to allow an ethanol plant on land they personally own.

In its defense to the lawsuit, Century Foods claimed that the October 2007 settlement memorandum was a non-binding agreement and was subject to conditions that never occurred. Century Foods representatives had stated that the deal didn't go through as emissions from the ethanol plant, which is near Century Foods' largest Sparta plant, would contaminate its milk-based products, while Friends of Sparta, a citizens group that opposed the proposed ethanol plant and other residents raised issues such as potential odor problems. The farmers and other investors in CARE disputed those claims.

Sources on both sides stated that as part of a settlement reached recently, Century Foods International agreed to buy the proposed 83.7-acre Sparta ethanol plant site from CARE. Century Foods will pay $2.5 million for the Sparta land and for other rights. Under the terms of the agreement, CARE agreed to not build an ethanol plant within three miles of Century Foods' Sparta plants. [LACROSSE TRIBUNE: AGREEMENT SETTLES SPARTA ETHANOL PLANT CONTROVERSY]

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Published on Mar-19-08


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