Tuesday, October 25, 2011

More Corn for Food, Not Ethanol

UPDATE 5/30/2015 - The URL for the report has changed and now correctly links to the PDF.


A common mistake critics make concerning ethanol is their claim that more corn is used for ethanol than for animal or human food use.

And indeed, looking at raw numbers would show that ethanol consumes more.

 But the figures don't tell the full story.

And ethanol critics know better.

More than a third of the corn that's used in the ethanol process is returned as animal feed.

Dried Distillers Grains are an important co-product of the ethanol process.

Beef, pork, and poultry producers here in the US and around the world use DDGs as nutritious animal feed.

But can that be proven?

A new report from the USDA's Economic Research Service concludes that nearly 40 percent of the corn used for ethanol goes directly back into the feed supply as a high-protein animal feed.

The feed from ethanol production saves money for animal producers because it averages 80 percent cheaper than corn and can displace a greater amount of corn because of its nutritional value.

Source: Estimating the Substitution of Distillers’ Grains for Corn and Soybean Meal in the U.S. Feed Complex (PDF)


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