A Wisconsin entrepreneur has a vision for a new energy source. It will never go head to head with corn as an energy source, but Joe Van Groll has turned a former cheese plant near Stratford into a facility that uses a byproduct of cheesemaking, called whey permeate. The whey permeate can be fermented into a variety of useful products, including ethanol. At the end of the process, the plant puts out only clean water. Van Groll says the plant is an example of relatively small scale, local energy production, with four to six million gallons of ethanol the optimum output for a plant of this type. It's a formula he believes could be repeated successfully elsewhere in Wisconsin.
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