Great Western Malting proposes multi-million dollar facility

At a special board meeting on June 28, Port of Vancouver Commissioners approved an option to lease for long-time port tenant Great Western Malting that moves forward the potential development of what could be the largest ethanol facility in the western United States. The 4.8-acre site is adjacent to their Vancouver malting plant.

The proposed $100 million ethanol plant is anticipated to create 42 new direct family-wage jobs, and to inject over $200 millions annually into the local economy. The ethanol plant also will has the potential to create business for other port tenants to handle the grain movement, and storage and shipment of the ethanol. Upon final project approval, Great Western Malting will provide $250,000 to fund rail improvements necessary for the ethanol plant, and support the port’s south rail project that will add freight rail capacity for port tenants and the mainline rail network.

Great Western Malting, a port tenant since the 1930s, has a competitive edge in this emerging industry by integrating its current malting process with an ethanol facility because of the availability of heat for the malting facility, their grain offloading handling capabilities, and the access to on-site rail and shipping traffic.

One of the key by-products of manufacturing ethanol is the production of large volume of heat, which in turn, can support the malting process at the existing facility.

‘This is a truly synergistic project that combines our existing operations with cutting edge technology,’ said Ann Rivers, GWM’s corporate spokesperson. ‘We believe that if this project comes to fruition, we can make a huge contribution to energy independence for our country, and this proposed project will make no additional major energy demands as a part of the process.’

Another key factor is the logistics supply chain where Great Western Malting is already equipped to handle agricultural products, and the Port of Vancouver is conveniently located at the crossroads of rail, road and river access.

‘The Port actively supports projects that create economic benefits to the port, our tenants, and our local community,’ said Nancy Baker, Port Commission President. ‘Great Western Malting has a long history in Vancouver, and we are pleased to be a partner in promoting the environment and the economy.’