USGC Talks Overseas Ethanol Demand At Growth Energy, RFA Conferences

U.S. Grains Council (USGC) staff and consultants participated in this month’s annual meetings of Growth Energy and the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), highlighting both the overseas market potential for U.S.-produced ethanol and the partnership between the three organizations helping to build that demand. 

USGC, Growth and RFA work closely on ethanol export market development strategy, focusing on key markets including Japan, Mexico, Canada, India, China, the Philippines, South Korea, Peru and Colombia. 

This continuing dialogue and collaboration with the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) are integral components of developing markets and enabling trade for U.S. ethanol.

“We have country-specific strategies for each of our priority markets, the budgets support necessary to implement those strategies and the support of the entire ethanol industry to succeed. We are really ramping up the program this year into a global engagement,” said Mike Dwyer, USGC chief economist,  who oversees the organization's ethanol programs.

“It is still early, but U.S. ethanol exports are responding to increased demand for clean, high-octane ethanol to blend into transportation fuel. So far in 2016/2017, U.S. exports are up 65 percent from last year's pace and on target to comfortably exceed 1 billion gallons by year’s end, the second highest level ever.”

Dwyer and Ryan LeGrand, USGC director in Mexico, attended Growth Energy’s Executive Leadership Conference in Miami, Florida, from Feb. 9 to 10 to participate in panels, presentations and workshops that discussed the future of advanced biofuels.

LeGrand also spoke to the group on the Council's educational activities in Mexico that highlight the benefits of ethanol through technical workshops and trade missions and described Mexico's energy reform, private infrastructure construction and demand potential.  

"Mexico is an important target market for U.S. ethanol," said LeGrand. "I appreciate the opportunity to share with the group how the Council is working to lay the groundwork to meet this growing demand.' 

The pair was joined by Amit Sachdev, USGC consultant in India, and ethanol buyers from Mexico at the National Ethanol Conference in San Diego, California, this week. 

The theme of this year’s conference, RFA's annual meeting, was “Building Partnerships, Growing Markets,” which describes the foreign market development effort the industry is collectively undertaking. 

At the conference, LeGrand again spoke on USGC’s work to promote U.S. ethanol as a clean-burning source of fuel to buyers and end-users in Mexico. 

Worldwide demand increases for ethanol, paired with new government and taxation policies put into effect every year, alter ethanol trade on all levels. 

Recent ethanol-focused programs include technical and policy workshops in Asia and Latin America, trade teams in the United States and ongoing industry working groups to offer expertise to overseas buyers looking to institute policy and infrastructure changes that support biofuels development. 

More on USGC’s ethanol outreach is here.