MESTILLA to invest EUR 30 million in modernisation, expansion and new environmental solutions
MESTILLA, a rapeseed processing and biodiesel production company operating in the Klaipėda Free Economic Zone (FEZ), plans to start a new phase of expansion and modernisation in 2023: the construction of a new modern deep processing line for oilseeds, while introducing state-of-the-art environmental solutions. In the initial phase, investments of around €30 million are planned for these projects.
“The decision to invest was dictated by the European Green Deal, the increasing quantities of rapeseed grown in Lithuania each year and our ambition to produce higher value added products. We are seeing a growing demand for concentrated proteins for animal feed in Lithuania and in other EU countries, as well as an increasing demand for biofuels. The modernisation of the plant will allow us to process up to 500,000 tonnes of oilseeds and to develop a circular economy; the plant itself will be more energy efficient and reduce our carbon footprint. Most importantly, it will eliminate the possibility of odours in residential areas, thus meeting the expectations of neighbouring communities,” says Arūnas Zubas, CEO of UAB MESTILLA.
Eimantas Kiudulas, Head of Klaipėda FEZ, says he fully supports the project.
“The project will essentially be a reconstruction, during which some of the old production lines will be closed and new ones will be opened. I am delighted that MESTILLA will combine business development with substantial investment in odour reduction measures that will make the production footprint virtually odourless. The project will therefore be more modern, higher quality and more responsive to the needs of communities and neighbourhoods. At the same time, MESTILLA’s investment will create additional added value in Lithuania by processing local raw materials that have previously been exported unprocessed, and will further strengthen Klaipėda FEZ’s increasingly relevant investment portfolio in the areas of the circular economy, innovations, exports and renewable energy,” says E. Kiudulas.
“Canola production in Lithuania is increasing year on year, and not only is it economically attractive for farmers, but its properties are particularly beneficial for the soil, crop rotation, and the ecosystem, and in reducing the overall need for fertilisers for the soil and subsequent crops. It is therefore very important and welcome that as much rapeseed grown in Lithuania as possible is processed locally, creating added value, as it is an additional source of both income of and jobs throughout the supply chain, as well as additional revenue for the Lithuanian budget. It also avoids long logistics chains, thus contributing to reducing pollution and improving the environment. Deep rapeseed processing will produce innovative, protein-based products that have not been produced in the Baltic States before, which are particularly attractive and in demand in the food and feed industry of today, and tomorrow. And the production of advanced biofuels will help to achieve the objectives of reducing transport pollution, the Renewable Energy Directive and the circular economy,” says Dalia Rušiauskienė, Director of the Lithuanian Association of Cereal Processors and Merchants.
MESTILLA, together with the design company Sweco Lietuva, plans to start an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) procedure in December this year.
The MESTILLA plant has been operating in the Klaipėda FEZ since 2007. The company’s main products are biodiesel (methyl ester of fatty acids) and protein feed from rapeseed. The company, together with the companies providing services to it, directly creates around 120 jobs. For the 2020-2021 season, the company’s revenues amounted to EUR 148.5 million. The company sells its products on the local market, in addition to exporting them to surrounding EU markets.