Kan. soybean farmer honored for service to biodiesel industry
The National Biodiesel Board recently recognized Harold Kraus from Hays, Kan., for his outstanding efforts in advancing the biodiesel industry. Kraus has served as the primary representative for the Kansas Soybean Commission on the NBB for 12 years and is retiring from the position.
“Harold has been a tremendous advocate for the biodiesel industry who will definitely be missed,” NBB CEO Joe Jobe said. “The industry has grown out of infancy to a billion-gallon industry due in large part to the efforts of champions like Mr. Kraus.”
NBB presented Kraus with a Friend of Biodiesel award in June at a membership meeting in Washington, D.C.
“Any time your peers pat you on the back you have to feel better,” Kraus said. “When I came on board, there were 55 members. Now, we’re in the hundreds. We’ve got a good number of people, and they’re doing their job.”
Biodiesel is made from an increasingly diverse mix of resources, such as soybean oil, animal fats and recycled cooking oil. It is the first and only advanced biofuel, as designated by the U.S. EPA that is produced on a commercial scale across the U.S. It is produced in nearly every state in the country and is used in existing diesel engines without modifying them. In 2012, the biodiesel industry produced more than 1 billion gallons, supporting about 50,000 jobs across the country.
“From the start, the soybean checkoff has played a major role in developing the U.S. biodiesel industry, and soybean farmers like Harold have invested a lot of time, energy and resources into bringing American-made, high-performing biodiesel to the marketplace,” said Dennis Hupe, KSC director of field services. “The award never can express fully the thanks that Harold deserves for his dedication to the development of the biodiesel industry.”
The National Biodiesel Board is the national trade association representing America’s first advanced biofuel. The group works to create sustainable biodiesel-industry growth through education, communication, governmental affairs, technical and quality-assurance programs. Serving as the coordinating body for research and development in the U.S., NBB comprises state, national and international feedstock and feedstock-processor organizations, biodiesel suppliers, fuel marketers and distributors, and technology providers.
The Kansas Soybean Commission, headquartered in Topeka, includes nine volunteer farmer-commissioners who are elected by their peers. They oversee investments of the legislated soybean checkoff assessment in research, consumer information, market development, industry relations and farmer outreach to improve the profitability of all Kansas soybean farmers.