News stories this week point to U.S. ethanol export opportunities with Brazil, while further cooperation between U.S. corn farmers and ethanol producers looks like a win-win for everyone. Those stories, plus a new report finds there’s more than enough biomass for biofuels, without affecting global food supply.

Rising Brazilian ethanol prices open window for U.S. imports

U.S. ethanol exports to Brazil will spike during the coming months as high gasoline prices and low ethanol supplies drive up demand in the South American country, according to two traders and two brokers active in the market.

The southward flow comes as a setback to Brazil’s efforts to curb foreign shipments. Its government in September slapped a 20% tariff on U.S. ethanol imports above a quota of 40 million gallons per quarter but is considering reversing the decision due to supply struggles.

The decision to reverse the tariff decision could depend on Washington lifting a ban on fresh beef exports from Brazil.

Get more on this story at Reuters.

Report: More than enough biomass for biofuels without affecting food supply

The German organization UFOP has published a new report finding that strong global harvest yields mean that supply is more than sufficient to meet worldwide demand, even if many parts of the world suffer from severe food shortages.

The report says that around the world, hunger is caused principally by military conflicts, poor governance and extreme weather events, along with the reluctance of rich industrialized countries to provide effective food aid to combat the worst regional famines.

Learn more at Biofuels Digest or view the full report on the UFOP website.

2018 could be a tough year for U.S. corn farmers; biofuels could help  

The market is sitting on a lot of corn supplies, and the latest January report showed corn production is estimated at 14.604 billion in 2017-2018—up 26 million bushels, according to K-State Agricultural Economist Dan O’Brien.

While that’s an increase from previous estimates, O’Brien tries to give some hope to farmers, telling them grain is moving and to consider the ending stocks. Also, he said, consumption trends continue to look positive.

Meanwhile, Kansas Corn officials continue to look to expand markets as the state’s own corn crop continues to grow. Part of the effort is to increase ethanol blends at the pump.

“If we could get E15 as the typical blend as opposed to E10, that gives us an opportunity for another 2 billion bushels of corn to grind for that market,” said Greg Krissek, executive director Kansas Corn.

Read the full article at the High Plains/Midwest Ag Journal.

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Geoff Hayward

Communications Advisor at Novozymes
Geoff writes about Bioenergy for the Communications team at Novozymes. When he isn’t advocating for an industry that’s changing the world for the better, he can be found on a North Carolina bike path or playing slide guitar.