UK- ADM is taking significant steps to invest in its Ag Services and Oilseeds sector, as shared by Juan R. Luciano, the chairman, president, and chief executive officer of the US-based company.
Luciano provided insights during a presentation at the JP Morgan US All Stars Conference in London on September 18, stating that in the grain area, there is a lot of activity in terms of helping to transform agriculture from current practices into more regenerative practices.
“So we have a plan to grow the number of acres that we work with farmers to transform that. It’s been a very enlightening exercise because you take all the farmers with all practices, but with a lot of willingness to become part of the solution to help build a more sustainable agriculture system and also the pool from the customer side, and we find ourselves in the middle in a very good position to be able to articulate that,” Luciano remarked.
Luciano added that although not much capital is involved in the conversion process, it does affect a significant number of people.
He also stated that for the first time probably in 20, or 30 years, the industry is not necessarily a price-taker in grains, but the discussions have changed from pricing.
Luciano also spoke to the importance of biofuels in ADM’s Ag Services and Oilseeds business. He said that ADM on Sept. 18 received soybeans at its new crushing plant in Spiritwood, North Dakota, US, and expects to crush its first soybeans in the first week of October.
The startup of crushing operations at the Spiritwood plant is expected to add about 1.5 million tonnes of crushing capacity to the company’s footprint, he said, allowing for more production of low-carbon intensity feedstocks.
Another investment opportunity for the Ag Services and Oilseeds business involves automating and digitizing the company’s processing units to increase the yield of soybean or corn.
Luciano also noted that ADM needs to be aware of its customers’ decarbonization pledges, especially as customers advocate for more plant-based materials.
“So our ability to generate low-carbon intensity feedstocks as we decarbonize our units, we will become more an enabler of some of these products,” he said. “Some of these products will go to food and feed. Some of these products will go to fuel, industrial products, or consumer products.”