Growing opportunities for Kentucky's corn farmers in a changing industry. 

Fuel ethanol remains a significant market for the growing corn supply, and KyCGA works to ensure this market remains strong for our growers. When corn prices were low, our farmers found it difficult to cover their expenses. They worked very hard to grow the ethanol market to utilize the rising corn supply, a true American success story.

Corn prices are now robust, more money is entering rural America, and the result of our farmers' prosperity is nourishing our local communities. The next generation of corn farmers has a bright future, a future that is dependent upon maintaining a strong renewable fuels market.

Even among the production challenges of weather and pests, corn farmers continue to produce enough corn for livestock feed, food, and clean-burning, American Ethanol. 

Check out our Ethanol Resources page. 

Latest Ethanol News

RFS Has Been ‘Tremendous Success’ Since Adoption, According to RFA Analysis

(June 7, 2017) WASHINGTON- More than a decade after the original renewable fuel standard (RFS) was signed into law, tremendous progress has been made toward its goals of energy security, clean air and boosting local economies, according to a new analysis by the Renewable Fuels Association, “RFS Impacts: By the Numbers.” The analysis comes as EPA is expected to soon issue its proposed 2018 renewable volume obligations (RVOs) under the RFS.

Congress adopted the RFS in 2005 and expanded it in 2007. The program requires oil companies to blend increasing volumes of renewable fuels with gasoline and diesel, culminating with 36 billion gallons in 2022.

“The data show that by any objective measure, the RFS has been a tremendous success,” according to the analysis, which looks at data on how the world has changed since adoption of the RFS. Specifically, the analysis compares key data points and indicators from 2005 and 2007 to data from 2016.

Among the highlights:

  • The number of operational U.S. ethanol plants has grown from 81 in 2005 to 213 in 2016, while  ethanol production has grown from 3.9 billion gallons to 15.3 billion gallons, a nearly 300% increase;
  • U.S. ethanol industry jobs grew 121 percent from 153,725 in 2005 to 339,176 in 2016, and the value of the industry’s output quadrupled from $8.1 billion to $32.8 billion;
  • U.S. corn production has grown from 11.1 billion bushels in 2005 to 15.2 billion gallons in 2016, a 36 percent increase, while average yields grew from 147.9 bushels per acre to 174.6 bushels per acre;
  • U.S. petroleum net import dependence has dropped from 60% in 2005 to 25% in 2016, and would have been 33% last year without ethanol;
  • The number of retail gasoline stations offering flex fuels like E85 to flexible fuel vehicles (FFVs) grew 728 percent from 2005 to 2016, while the number of FFVs on the road grew 239 percent; and 
  • Ethanol’s role in cleaning the air has increased, with notable reductions in emissions of both greenhouse gases and criteria pollutants.

Meanwhile, the negative outcomes that opponents of the RFS suggested would occur simply have not materialized: 

  • Corn acres in 2016 were only 0.5 percent larger than in 2007, while total cropland was down more than 20 million acres (5 percent); 
  • Corn prices in 2016 were actually 19% lower than in 2007, while the corn surplus was 42% larger; 
  • Water use for irrigating corn trended lower, while the size of the Gulf hypoxia zone shrunk 14 percent between 2007 and 2016; 
  • Deforestation in the Amazon fell 58 percent between 2005 and 2016; 
  • Retail food price inflation was just 0.3 percent in 2016, compared to 2.4 percent in 2005 and 4 percent in 2007; 
  • Prices for red meat, poultry, fish, cereals and bakery items, and dairy actually experienced price deflation in 2016, compared to modest inflation in 2005 and 2007; 
  • U.S. milk production in 2016 was 20 percent higher than 2005, while red meat and poultry production was up 12 percent; and 
  • The U.N. global food price index was just 0.1 percent higher in 2016 than it was in 2007, while the number of people undernourished worldwide was down 16 percent.

“As this analysis clearly shows, the RFS has made a huge impact on consumers, providing them with greater choice at the pump, while cleaning the air and boosting local economies,” said RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen. “With EPA expected to propose its 2018 RFS obligations in the near future, the agency needs to look no further than this document for what impact this vital program has had on our nation. We look forward to EPA continuing to implement a strong RFS to ensure future growth for our industry and the positive impact it has throughout all sectors of our economy.”

The full analysis is available here.

Ethanol Breaks Through the 10% Blend Wall

(April 24, 2017) Gasoline consumed in the United States in 2016 contained more than 10 percent ethanol on average for the first time ever, according to an analysis of U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) data released last week by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA). The EIA data dispels the myth that 10 percent is the marketplace limit for ethanol content in U.S. gasoline, and demonstrates that the so-called “blend wall” is not a real constraint on ethanol consumption.

According to EIA data, finished motor gasoline consumption totaled 143.367 billion gallons in 2016. That volume of gasoline contained 14.399 billion gallons of ethanol, meaning the average ethanol content of gasoline consumed in 2016 was 10.04 percent.  According to the RFA report, the data “...further underscore that statutory Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) blending obligations in excess of the 10.0% level can be readily satisfied by the marketplace.”

The E15 station count and projections are also growing at unprecedented levels:

  • December 2016 - 400
  • March 2017 - 650
  • December 2017 - 1650

Retailers and convenience store chains adding E15 to their portfolio of fuel offerings are increasing as well.  Furthermore, when pumps are activated, based on the conversations we have had, sales data are consistently strong. 

"This achievement is the result of many years of collaboration between the nation's corn growers and ethanol groups," said KyCorn Promotion Council Chairman Philip McCoun. "We have been investing checkoff funds in infrastructure and awareness in Kentucky for several years, as well as invested in national promotion efforts. The programs are working. Breaking 10 percent nationally is a huge accomplishment, and the trend line looks really good for us."

View the Blend Wall Report

Ethanol Promotion