2011 Ag Innovator of the Year: North American Fertilizer

FibroMinn burns about 700,000 tons of poultry litter collected from local farmers to produce 55 megawatts of power. The ash from the plant travels a 500-foot conveyer over to North American Fertilizer. Once there, North American Fertilizer takes the ash—which already contains a rich, well-balanced package of macro and micro nutrients—and processes it into fertilizer. It is the only operation of its kind in the United States, and only the second in
the world.

While North American Fertilizer employs just four people to run its operation, “there’s a trickle-down effect, in that the product goes out to dealers and supports lots of folks involved in the fertilizer and input business,” says Steve Miller, the general manager of the plant. CEO Randy Tersteeg started up the business seven years ago.

“What keeps North American Fertilizer vital is that we continually look for value-added markets—new uses for this package of nutrients,” explains Miller. “In that way we can grow our revenue for it.