John Meyer of LouisDreyfus Commodities was guest speaker at the Rotary Club meeting Friday.

Meyer, the company's marketing director in Claypool, brought the members up to date regarding the vast project located south of Claypool, east of Ind. 15.

Meyer, from Iowa, said he has an agricultural background and earned his first "real money" walking soybeans and bailing hay. His father owned a fertilizer plant.

For the last 15 years, the last seven with LouisDreyfus, he has run elevators in Iowa, Delaware and Illinois. He and his family recently relocated to Warsaw.

Projecting figures on a screen for everyone to see, Meyer said the Agricultural Industries division is new for the commodities giant.

It is estimated the company handles 20 percent of all grain movement in the world. LouisDreyfus also maintains a maritime fleet, has telecommunications companies in Europe and a real estate division.

He verified that actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus ("The New Adventures of Old Christine," "Seinfeld" and "Saturday Night Live" fame) is the daughter of William Louis-Dreyfus, head of the company's energy division. He gave no indication as to whether or not the Emmy Award winner would attend the grand opening at the facility.

Meyer said 60 employees will work at the plant with a job fair tentatively scheduled for this winter.

The site is about 7 percent complete. It is expected to be operational by next October.

While there will be some grain storage capacity on site - 12 million bushel's worth - that only represents 12 days-worth of work. Meyer said representatives have been working with the area elevators to have enough soybeans on hand when they start crushing 149,900 bushels a day.

In addition to biofuel the plant will manufacture soybean meal which is primarily fed to hogs and chickens. They hope 60 percent of the meal is sold locally.

And they hope 60 percent of the soybeans come from local farmers.

The railroad spur to the facility is three miles long and will hold 187 railcars.

They expect more than 160 semi loads of soybeans per day. Improvements to Ind. 15 for acceleration and deceleration lanes are still being discussed with the Indiana Department of Transportation and the county.

The plant can take in one-third of the state's soybean crop, however, Meyer expects "imports" from Michigan and Illinois.

The company seeks contracts with local farmers now and will take big truckloads in addition to semi-tractor trailer shipments. Meyer said they were discouraging anyone from arriving on a tractor pulling a wagon.

About 50 acres of the 257 acre area will be used for the agricultural complex.

G & G Hauling of Warsaw has excavated a hole 25 feet deep and an acre in size to support the processing area.

"Cary Groininger (of G & G) said if there are 98 soil types in Kosciusko County, there all at the site," Meyer said. G & G has been bringing in loads of sand to fill the hole after everything from sand to silt to peat was removed from the area.

There will be six miles of underground piping; 20,000 cubic yard of poured concrete, 12 acres of parking lots and 70,000 ton of stone laid at the site.

Lewis Jones is president of the Warsaw Rotary Club; Jerry Henline, president-elect; Laura Kaufman, secretary; ken Locke, treasurer; Committees are chaird by -Max Courtney and Joy McCarthy-Sessing, membership; Stephanie Overbey, public relations; Laura Kaufman and Ken Locke, administration; David Jones (domestic) and David Hamrick (international), service projects and the Rotary Foundation committee is chaired by Alan Alderfer and Alec McPherson.

Rotary Club meets each Friday at noon. The next meeting is in the Ramada Atrium.