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Osage Bio Energy Kicks Off 'Barley Bin Builder' Yield Contest

Top Barley Producer Entry in Seven-State Region To Win New Flex Fuel Pickup


GLEN ALLEN, Va., Oct. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Following the groundbreaking of its first barley-based ethanol and protein feed bio-processing facility in Hopewell, Va., Osage Bio Energy LLC is launching the Barley Bin Builder Yield Contest for the 2009 crop season.

To increase farmer interest in regional barley production, the Barley Bin Builder Yield Contest will award $1,000 by state to the farmer entry with the highest barley yield per acre within a seven-state region. Osage Bio Energy, Perdue AgriBusiness and Virginia Farm Bureau are cosponsoring the contest. These organizations are looking forward to working with state grain organizations and land grant extension services in the Barley Bin Builder Yield Contest.

Farmers in Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina are eligible to enter the Barley Bin Builder Yield Contest. The top entry among the seven states will receive a Flex Fuel pickup truck as the grand prize.

The yield contest coincides with Osage Bio Energy's planned construction of bio-processing facilities in the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic. Once operational in 2010, the facilities will work with regional grain elevators to purchase barley for bio-energy production.

Osage Bio Energy will award cash prizes for the top three entries of barley yields per acre in each state eligible for the Barley Bin Builder Yield Contest. In addition to the $1,000 first-place prize for the top entry in each eligible state, the second-highest yield per acre entry will receive a $750 prize and the third-place entry will receive a $500 prize.

"The Barley Bin Builder Yield Contest will reward high-yielding farmers in the region who help ramp up the barley production that Osage Bio Energy will need starting with the 2010 crop season, as we bring our facilities into production in 2010," said Joel Stone, Chief Operating Officer of Osage Bio Energy LLC.

"The contest also allows farmers to demonstrate effective crop and soil management capabilities. We hope that regional farmers will share our goal of developing high-producing barley crops as we build the barley market in the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic," Stone said.

"Perdue is excited about the opportunity that barley brings to farmers in the region," said John Ade, Perdue AgriBusiness Vice President of Grain Sales and Merchandising. "Adding value to growers' crops and supporting renewable energy is good news for agriculture."

"The Virginia Farm Bureau Federation is pleased to co-sponsor the Barley Bin Builder Yield Contest in Virginia and assist in the development of farm opportunities in agriculture-based bioenergy," stated Wayne Pryor, President of Virginia Farm Bureau Federation. "We look forward to partnering with Osage Bio Energy and in laying the groundwork for barley as a food and fuel cash crop."

Each of Osage Bio Energy's two bio-processing facilities will provide over $100 million in agricultural economic opportunities, offering farmers a consistent and viable market for barley. And, because barley can be double-cropped with soybeans, farmers can also increase soybean yields by choosing barley.

"Double-cropped soybeans planted in late May to early June after the barley harvest provides a clear timing advantage for soybeans. There's an expected yield drag with later planted doublecropped soybeans. Being able to plant soybeans early in June behind barley eliminates or greatly reduces the yield loss on soybeans while still offering barley as a cash crop. The barley yield contest will show us the yield potential of barley as a cash crop. Its potential is especially important since we will have a market with the Osage Bio Energy project. I think that a lot of farmers will want to take advantage of barley as a part of their cropping system," said Bryan Taliaferro, President of Virginia Identity Preserved Grains LLC.

"We have the potential to reach barley yields in excess of 120 bushels per acre," said Wade Thomason, Virginia Tech Extension Grain Specialist. "The Barley Bin Builder Yield Contest gives us a great opportunity to investigate the full potential for high-yielding barley under good management conditions."

Contest details and application forms for the Barley Bin Builder Yield Contest can be obtained by contacting local cooperative extension specialists and grain officials.

About Osage Bio Energy

Headquartered in Glen Allen, Va., Osage Bio Energy launched in January 2007 with the goal of developing the first major barley-to-ethanol bio-processing facilities in the United States. Osage Bio Energy will market its ethanol through Roanoke, Va.-based Osage, Inc., the largest independent distributor of motor-fuel grade ethanol in the Southeast, with current throughput of over 165 million gallons per year. Osage Bio Energy is developing a market for barley that will provide farmers with a high-value cash crop to serve as an alternative feedstock for ethanol production, produce a high-quality Barley Protein Meal for livestock and provide soil conservation benefits by promoting year-round farming opportunities. Visit for more information.

SOURCE Osage Bio Energy LLC
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