Tire recycling plant will start with 50 new jobs

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Estherville native and financial advisor Jeff Robinson, and founder and CEO of Universal Purifying Technologies Jeff Troth, announced Thursday evening that Troth’s tire recycling manufacturer will open a plant in Estherville, breaking ground this fall.

Troth said he plans on a 24/7 operation, with the options of two or three shifts to be determined.

“It depends on how much raw material we can feasibly bring into northern Iowa,” Troth said.

Here’s what Universal Purifying Technologies does: at full production Universal Purifying Technologies would process four million used tires per year. The used tires are the raw material and Troth’s patented process extracts the carbon black and reclaims zinc from the tires to create new products, including, but not limited to windshield wipers, floor mats, parts of car bodies, and much more. The advantage of the raw material as processed by Universal Purifying Technologies is the strength and durability built in to the end product, Troth said. The by-products are petroleum and steel. Nothing is left of the tire when the process is complete.

But who wants the odor of burned rubber in Estherville?

Troth said it will not be an issue.

“I designed this with the help of my engineers. We initially had small amounts of emissions that were flamed off; it measured at the same emissions as eight cars driven in the area per year,” Troth said.

Troth said he employed continuous improvement on even that measure of emissions. Using the same kinds of wet scrubbers now used in coal fire plants to bring their emissions to a level that complies with environmental regulations, Troth said, “This will eliminate over 99.5 percent of matter in the air.”

From the process to equipment to tires coming into the plant, Troth said residents are unlikely to see anything. Tires are pre-shredded either in-house or at a separate facility before they would arrive in Estherville, Troth said.

Robinson said the deal has been in the works for a year, and that the COVID-19 pandemic slowed everything down, including the financial side of things.

Troth said he was born in Indiana, and grew up in western Ohio with his brother on a farm.

Robinson told Troth, “If you grew up on a farm, you will definitely fit in in Estherville. Farmers are the greatest folks in the world.

Robinson updated the Estherville News on Friday afternoon, stating that eventually Universal Purifying Technologies could occupy all 24 acres in Estherville’s industrial park.

“It’s also a good time to announce [Troth] is very serious about Estherville and providing money and jobs for rural America. It’s very exciting,” Robinson said.

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