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* Plant to produce 2,200 tons of fertilizer daily
* CHS to supply farmers in U.S. northern Plains, Canada
Sept 12 (Reuters) - CHS Inc, the largest U.S. farmer co-op, said on Wednesday it plans to build a $1 billion nitrogen fertilizer plant in Spiritwood, North Dakota, and set to open in the last half of 2016.
The proposed plant will convert natural gas into 2,200 tons of ammonia fertilizer daily, and distribute it as anhydrous ammonia, urea and urea ammonium nitrate (UAN) liquid fertilizer to farm supply retailers and farmers in the Dakotas and parts of Minnesota, Montana and Canada, CHS said.
The plant would employ 100 to 150 people, CHS said.
"Today CHS imports fertilizer products from 19 countries. Developing additional domestic crop nutrients sources closer to our customers is critical to meeting demand, improving our logistical and distribution expertise," Carl Casale, chief executive for Minnesota-based CHS, said in a statement.
The United States is the world's largest importer of fertilizer, with more than half the country's nitrogen and nearly 90 percent of its potash supplies coming from international sources, according to the Fertilizer Institute.
CHS, a leader in the crop nutrients business, sources and distributes some 7 million tons of fertilizers annually to farmer-member co-ops across the United States.