Z Energy is planning to build what will probably be the world's first commercial biofuels plant which isn't subsidised by governments.
The company will initially invest $21 million in the plant at Wiri near Auckland which will produce 20 million litres a year of pure biodiesel - typically, this is blended with mineral diesel.
Z Energy says it will be able to double this capacity for an extra investment of $2.5 million, should demand be sufficient, and the biodiesel produced will meet both New Zealand and European standards.
The petrol station operator says its feedstock will be about 10 percent of the inedible tallow produced by the meat industry, which is currently exported to China and India to make soap and candles.
The company says it already has letters of intent from potential customers - most of the initial production will be sold to commercial customers rather than through Z's retail network.
Chief executive, Mike Bennetts says Z is very close to being able to start building the plant and it should be operating within about 14 months.