Bogus Logic in E15 Suits

By Mike Bryan | November 15, 2010
In a thinly veiled attempt to further line their pockets, the meat and poultry industry, and the grocery and convenience store associations, are once again trying to stop the advance of ethanol use in America. Action filed in federal court by these groups, requests that the court overturn the ruling by the U.S. EPA to allow E15 blends. This action only further solidifies the well-established fact that to them it's all about profit, not the consumer.

This consumer scam perpetrated by the Grocery Manufacturers Association is yet another attempt to raise food prices, while deflecting the blame. America is looking at the third largest corn production season in history. To suggest that there is a shortage and that consumers are going to suffer because of ethanol production is such a bogus argument that it defies logic.

The U.S. ethanol industry produces over 25 million metric ton of high quality, distillers grains each year. This is the same feed that cattle feeders, poultry producers and hog producers use when feeding cornonly the starch has been removed to make ethanol, the protein and other valuable nutrients remain.

Ethanol production in America has added more than half a million jobs, and generates over $70 billion towards our gross domestic product, while eliminating $20 billion in money exported for oil. The track record of the ethanol industry has been exemplary. It has set a standard for growth, technological advances and improved efficiencies that those industries making these ridiculous accusations should try to achieve.

Somehow these folks have conveniently ignored the fact that higher food prices are directly related to the cost of packaging, transportation and processing, which is largely driven by the price of oil, not the production of ethanol. To single out the use of corn for ethanol production as a driving factor in the rise of food prices is not just misguided, it's fraudulent. If these groups truly were concerned about the well-being of the American consumer, they would align with the ethanol industry to support greater domestic production, fewer imports, expanded exports and a cleaner environment.

Instead, these industry fat cats have chosen to focus on their own self-serving needs for greater profits, while finding an easy scapegoat in the American farmer.

That's the way I see it.

Author: Mike Bryan
Chairman, BBI International
mbryan@bbiinternational.com