February 24, 2017

In this Week's Pellet Wire:

See You Next Week for Breakfast & Biomass at HPB Expo 2017 in Atlanta, GA

The Hearth Patio & Barbecue Expo 2017 is taking place in Atlanta, Georgia, next week! 

PFI will be holding Breakfast & Biomass on Friday, March 3, at 7:30am. Don't miss the chance to network with fellow pellet fuels producers as well as stove manufacturers, retailers, suppliers and others involved in the pellet fuels industry. Learn about industry trends from the following speakers: 

  • The U.S. Energy Information Administration's Channele Wirman will give a briefing on the EIA's pellet fuels market data collection project. 
  • Pat Rita of Orion Advocates will also provide a comprehensive policy update. 
  • Cameron Downs with the Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association will give a comprehensive briefing on the pellet fuels market. 
  • Stan Elliot will give a preview of the PFI Annual Conference this summer at the Stowe Mountain Lodge in Vermont. 

Have breakfast and talk biomass with us at the HPB Expo. Registration is open for the $35 event, and is available on the Expo registration webpage.

If you have ideas for topics you'd like to see addressed at Breakfast & Biomass, please contact Carrie Annand at [email protected]

Government Affairs Update: Farm Bill Reauthorization

The Forests in the Farm Bill Coalition has held a couple of meetings since the beginning of the year to plan for the Farm Bill reauthorization. At this stage, various working groups have been formed to flesh out policy proposals for consideration to become part of the larger coalition's "ask" for the next Farm Bill, which is on track to be reauthorized next year. PFI has been tagged to serve on the Growing Jobs and Economy Working Group and in this role we will be focusing on various Energy Title programs that could be enhanced or improved to help our sector. Reforming the Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels so that it works better for densified biomass fuel producers is on the list as is making the Community Wood Energy Program more meaningful. If you have specific policy ideas that you think would help the pellet industry please forward those to us and we can help put them in play.  

PFI Standards Program Welcomes Michigan-Based Fiber By-Products

The Pellet Fuels Institute announced this week the qualification of Fiber By-Products of White Pigeon, Michigan, to the PFI Standards Program as the 21st pellet manufacturer and 34th facility qualified for the program. Fiber By-Products was qualified by accredited auditing agency Timber Products Inspection.

For information on qualifying for the program, the first step is to contact an accredited auditing agency, a list of which can be find on PFI's website. For further details on the PFI Standards Program, including a list of participating manufacturers, visit the PFI website, www.pelletheat.org

PFI Standards Program at the HPB Expo in Atlanta, GA

Has the PFI Standards Program qualified your company, and will you be at the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Expo in Atlanta next month? If so, we will have materials on hand to help you brief buyers, stove manufacturers and others about the PFI Standards Program. In addition to the materials below, we will have buttons available for members of your team to wear on the expo floor as a reminder that the program has qualified your company. Please contact us for more information and to arrange pickup of these materials at the expo.

PFI has created materials to help retailers and consumers learn more about the PFI Standards Program and its Quality Mark.

One pager on the Standards Program: Our informational handout on the PFI Standards Program explains the program and its implications for pellet producers, retailers and stove manufacturers. It also lists the companies that have been qualified for the program, along with their websites.

One pager on the symbols found on pellet bags: We have created a one pager specifically explaining the various PFI logos and marks found on bags of pellets. It helps retailers distinguish the PFI Standards Program Quality Mark from other commonly used symbols. This handout is also ideal for printing off and distributing to customers or posting in a store.

Materials for members of the program: For qualified companies, we have created a marketing kit with suggested language for ensuring that customers and retailers are aware of your company's acceptance into the program and what it means. It also includes suggested language for websites.

If you are interested in receiving any of these materials, please contact Carrie Annand at [email protected]. If you are interested in joining the program, first step is to visit PFI's Standards Program web pages to identify an accredited auditing agency. The agency will help you come up with a Quality Control manual and get you on the path to joining the program. 

U.S. Forest Service Reaffirms PFI Partnership

This week, the U.S. Forest Service hosted PFI, along with the other biomass-related groups that signed its Memorandum of Understanding in 2013. Bruce Lisle represented PFI, sharing our priorities and recommending a renewed focus on jobs in the forestry and biomass sector.

The U.S. Forest Service expressed continued support for biomass heating and its role in forest management. The group brainstormed ways to promote biomass and support each of the organizations involved in the partnership, including shared data resources, highlighting the biomass and forest products supply chain and finding new ways for biomass fuel producers to collect hazardous fuels from federal lands.

2017 PFI Sponsorship & Advertising Opportunities 

PFI invites you to become a 2017 sponsor! This year, we have developed a new, streamlined sponsorship program that will create multiple opportunities for your company in 2017. Your company will have great visibility at PFI events, on the PFI website, and in the PFI newsletter, amongst other benefits.

The 2017 Sponsorship packages include benefits such as:

  • PFI Annual Conference registrations
  • Breakfast & Biomass registrations
  • Company logo listed on the PFI website
  • 10x10 booth at the PFI Annual Conference
  • Weekly newsletter advertising
  • Website advertising
  • And more!

PFI's membership includes over 100 member companies, and our electronic newsletter is sent to over 3,500 people every week. Now is the time to become a sponsor of this organization. Visit our website to explore how you can become involved.

Bathan AG Announces Hire of Jorg Langenhuysen

The Swiss lubricant manufacturer Bathan AG announced the hire of Jorg Langenhuysen in January. Mr. Langenhuysen will join the company's team of service engineers, bringing more than 15 years of experience with pellet mills. As a former CPM service engineer, he has a broad knowledge of the operational nuances of pelletizing and how to improve operational excellence. Together with Andreas, Bathan AG builds a strong and flexible team that is willing to get the best performance possible for its global customers.


Follow and Connect With Us on Social Media!

We urge all PFI members to engage with us on social media. By joining PFI in being visible and active on social media, we can make our voices heard more loudly and by many more audiences.

Follow us on Twitter: @PelletFuel
Friend us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/pfipellets
Link with us on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/pellet-fuels-institute

Have News to Share on Pellet Wire?

We'd love to feature your company's news in a future Pellet Wire! We want to be the first to know your company's recent developments to share them with the wider pellet fuels industry.

Please be in touch with Carrie Annand at [email protected] with information on your company's growth, job openings, promotions or other news. 

Join a PFI Committee

We welcome and encourage all interested PFI members to get involved in our committees. There are many opportunities to help steer the association. No matter where your expertise and interests lie, we have a committee that will suit you. Help us plan our next conference, shape our policy agenda, lead communications outreach or grow the PFI Standards Program. Visit PFI's website for more information.


Upcoming Industry Events 

March 3, 2017: PFI Breakfast & Biomass

July 23-25, 2017: PFI Annual Conference

Connect with PFI

PFI Newsletter
Join PFI

Fuel Availability

Are you a PFI member pellet manufacturer or distributor that has fuel available? Email [email protected] to have your listing updated or added to the PFI website.

Industry News

Trump, Obama and Wood Stoves
Biomass Magazine
Many of us in the wood and pellet heating movement are doing a lot of soul searching these days. Not only do we have a president who questions the science behind climate change, we also have to deal with the effects of a warming world that is gradually reducing demand for the renewable energy technology we support.

Even though Trump is a climate change skeptic and put the head of Exxon in charge of our state department, could he still do something good for our modest slice of the residential renewable energy movement?

Obama was a champion of renewable energy, but his administration did not deliver that much for our sector. He did give us a vision for an America that would steadily increase the amount of renewable energy on our grid, and in our cars. Renewable heat policy was sure to follow. 

Read the Full Article

Heat and Economic Development - Franklin County Legislature Hears Pitch for Municipal Wood Pellet Heat Systems
Watertown NY Daily Times
Heat for municipal buildings may literally grow on trees.

The Franklin County Legislature met Thursday with Leslie Karasin of the Northern Forest Center for a presentation on the group's incentive program to expand access to wood-pellet-fueled heaters.

The Northern Forest Center operates in four states - New York, Massachusetts, Maine and New Hampshire - with Karasin's regional office focusing on the north country from its Saranac Lake location. The center promotes a variety of programs aimed at economic development and forest conservation.

Karasin's presentation focused on the center's modern wood heating program in Northern New York. The program offers incentives for municipal buildings to convert to "efficient, automated wood pellet boilers."

Read the Full Article

Drax Discusses Good Operational Year, Discusses Future in Biomass 
Biomass Magazine
Drax Group has released its preliminary results for 2016, accompanied by a webcast presentation given by CEO Dorothy Thompson, who discussed challenges and successes over the past year, as well as some of the company's future goals and prospects in relation to biomass conversions and wood pellet production.

Thompson said Drax's power generation business has a good operational year, highlighting the its state aid approval for a contract for difference (CfD) in December after a lengthy delay, and completion of the conversion of Drax's third power unit to wood pellets.

In 2016, 75 percent of Drax's power generation was derived from biomass, Thompson said, granting it the title of the largest single-source of renewable energy in the United Kingdom, having produced 1.27 terawatt-hours (TWh) of renewable power. Drax generates 16 percent of the renewable electricity in the U.K., she added, but in terms of support costs, it only represents around 10 percent. Currently, two of Drax's units are supported by grandfathered renewable obligation credits (ROCs), and the other by the CfD.

Read the Full Article


Pellet Fuels Institute |  [email protected]   | 206.209.5277