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On Farm Alcohol Plant Still In Production
Low fuel prices have cooled the search for alternative sources of energy but one Wisconsin farm family's alcohol plant is still going strong.
Bob and Cathy Kallian, Neillsville, make up a batch of about 80 gal. of alcohol every few days to burn in their modified tractors. Their alcohol still is unusual in that they use methane fuel generated by their 65 dairy cows to cook and distill the mash during the alcohol process.
"We began making alcohol full force in 1984. It has taken time to work out all the bugs. So far as we know, ours is the only alcohol plant of its kind. It's operated partially by a micro-processor, which automatically controls cooking operations.
"We cook up a batch with 750 gal. water, 40 bu. finely ground corn, and enzymes. Our output of 2 gal. of alcohol per bushel of corn still needs work, since a bushel should produce 2 gal. We've been using alcohol in our farm tractors for approximately 1 years and really like its power increase value. Our Ford 9700 diesel tractor is fitted with an alcohol injector that burns 70% diesel and 30% alcohol, and we also have two gas tractors, an Oliver 1850 and a Farmall 400, converted.
"We have two cookers which ferment and distill the corn. There's no need to transfer the mash to separate the 'beer'. After the batch is distilled the 'spent beer' is pumped out to our dairy cows, who love it. They actually fight to get to the tank. I recently had the feed mash tested for protein and it came out at 29.8% which is high enough to save us dollars for protein supplements. It's also 98% TDN. Cows cut down on consumption of silage while getting the mash.
"Eventually we are planning on adding a hydroponic greenhouse which would thrive on the CO2 which is created during fermentation."
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Bob & Cathy Kallian, Rt. 4, Box 517, Neillsville, Wis. 54456 (ph 715 238-7773).

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1986 - Volume #10, Issue #5