Midwest AgEnergy Group, a unit of Great River Energy, has conducted a groundbreaking ceremony for the $155m Dakota Spirit AgEnergy biorefinery situated near Jamestown, North Dakota.

The new plant is estimated to produce 65 million gallons of ethanol, distillers grains and fuel-grade corn oil at the Spiritwood Energy Park. The company has secured the Renewable Fuel Standard 2 certification for the ethanol production from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Midwest AgEnergy Group president Greg Ridderbusch said the groundbreaking ceremony reflects a significant milestone for the 65 million gallon-per-year biorefinery, and also represents a result achieved by the combined efforts of many stakeholders.

"Dakota Spirit AgEnergy creates value at the intersection between agriculture and energy," added Ridderbusch.

Dakota Spirit AgEnergy will purchase 23 million bushels of corn annually, besides producing 198,000 tons of distillers grains for local agriculture producers to feed the livestock industry.

Commercial operation is scheduled for the first quarter of 2015, the company said.