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When Farmers' Rice Cooperative signed a deal to allow a biomass company in Williams to convert its old rice hulls into energy, the rice hulls were nothing but a nuisance.
You couldn't give the dog-gone things away.
That was then.
Now, rice hulls can sell for anywhere from $6 a ton wholesale, to $35 a ton retail. They are used both as a growing source of fuel for energy plants, as well as a source of bedding and feed for poultry farms.
Somewhere along the line, Farmers' Rice started sending fewer hulls to the Williams company, and began selling rice hulls on the open market.
That's according to a lawsuit filed against Farmers' Rice by Wadham Energy Limited Partnership.
But somewhere along the line, Wadham Energy stopped burning all the rice hulls it was getting in its biomass plant and, like Farmers', started selling them on the open market.
That's according to court …