Farmers Coop Society’s (FCS) old feed mill in Boyden, IA is rated at 600 tpd, but in recent years, it has been pushing 800 tpd. “We were running 24 hours a day, 5-1/2 days a week,” says Jared Terpstra, a 16-year veteran with the cooperative and feed division manager since June 2017. “We were in operation most Saturday mornings.”
The main factor driving that frantic, beyond-capacity pace was exploding demand in northwest Iowa, southwest Minnesota, and southeast South Dakota. In particular, a huge new Seaboard packing plant in Sioux City, IA has been driving increased livestock production, especially swine.
The pace is less frantic at the old mill since FCS began production in mid-June at a new all-steel 3,000-tpd mill, its second in Boyden. The new mill, devoted entirely to swine feed production, is adjacent to the cooperative’s 2.4-million-bushel Boyden elevator one block north of the U.S. Highway 18 blacktop. (The older mill remains in production focusing on specialty feeds.)
The opening follows 18 months of construction with B & E Construction Inc., Eagle Grove, IA (800-779-0001), serving as general contractor and millwright. “B & E has done multiple upgrades for us on other feed mills, and we were comfortable with them,” Terpstra comments. “We also liked the price on their bid.”
Other major players on the project:
- Process and Storage Solutions, Appleton, WI (866-335-2216), performed extensive engineering work.
- Larson Contracting Central LLC, Lake Mills, IA (641-592-5800), performed concrete construction.
FCS still is tallying the final cost of the new feed mill.
Currently, about two-thirds of the new Boyden mill’s output is in the form of bulk mash feeds, while the other third runs through the mill’s single pellet line. (Plans call for the addition of a second line, as needed.)
The new mill’s 120-x-60-foot footprint includes a single-story warehouse and a 163-foot-tall mill tower. The tower, in turn, includes 19 square ingredient bins holding about 2,000 tons of ingredients, two mash bins holding 150 tons each, and 20 loadout bins with a total of 1,500 tons.
All milling functions are under the control of a CPM/Beta Raven automation system.
This begins with grinding operations. Some corn is run through an RMS 12x62 crusher in advance of two Bliss hammermills, which reduce the corn to 300-micron particles at 120 tph. “The theory is that pre-crushed corn provides less pull on the actual hammermill, resulting in lower energy usage,” says Ron Witham, feed production manager, who came to FCS 1-1/2 years ago from Farmers Cooperative (now Landus).
The rest of the corn is reduced on one of three RMS 12x52 triple-stack roller mills at 135 tph.
Feed ingredients are combined in an eight-ton Scott double-ribbon mixer at an average mix time of three minutes per batch. Fats can be added at the mixer using a Liquid Systems valve and Micro Motion flowmeter. Microingredients are sent from a 34-bin Beta Raven micro system, 14 bins using a loss-in-weight system.
Pelleting is done on a Buhler T-12 pelleting line, featuring an 800-hp pellet mill fed by steam from a pair of Buhler steam conditioners, which is generated in a Cleaver-Brooks boiler.
The pellet line features a prototype counterflow cooler from Buhler, with a signature octagonal shape. The cooler features a cone-shaped stopper, which moves to release pellets when they reach a target temperature. Finally, the mill features an express multi-spout loadout system designed by B & E Construction. FCS operates a fleet of 38 feed trucks.
Ed Zdrojewski, editor
Farmers Coop Society
Sioux Center, IA • 712-722-2671
Feed milling capacity: 1.5 million tpy at seven locations
Products: Swine, poultry, beef, and dairy feeds
Annual revenues: $9.7 million
Number of members: 3,008
Number of employees: 250
- Jared Terpstra, feed division manager
- Ron Witham, feed production manager
- Alec Rector, Boyden mill manager
Aeration system - Pesco Inc.
Air compressors - Gardner Denver
Bearing sensors - 4B Components Ltd.
Bin level monitors - BinMaster Level Controls
Boiler - Cleaver Brooks
Bucket elevators - Schlagel Inc.
Concrete - Larson Contracting Central LLC
Contractor - B & E Construction Inc.
Conveyors - Schlagel Inc.
Distributors - Schlagel Inc.
Dust collection system - Schenck Process
Dust filters - Pesco Inc.
Elevator buckets - Tapco Inc.
Engineering - Process and Storage Solutions
Gates/diverters - Schlagel Inc., Tom-Cin Metals Inc.
Hammermills - Bliss Industries LLC
Liquid tanks - Liquid Systems Inc.
Magnets - Eriez
Manlift - Schumacher Elevator Co.
Mass flow meters - Micro Motion Meters
Microingredient system - CPM/Beta Raven
Mill control system - CPM/Beta Raven
Mixer - Scott Eqiupment Co.
Motion sensors - 4B Components Ltd.
Pellet cooler - Buhler Inc.
Pellet mill - Buhler Inc.
Roller mills - RMS Roller-Grinder Inc.
Scales - Rice Lake Weighing Systems
Screeners - RM&M
Screw feeders - Martin Engineering Co.
Separators - Buhler Inc.
Speed reducers - Dodge
Square bins - Process and Storage Solutions
Steel storage - Star Building