Study: Ethanol and RFS have no impact on food prices

A study by the Renewable Fuels Association seeks to combat concerns raised by opponents of the Renewable Fuel Standard, or RFS.

Bob Dinneen, the group’s president and CEO, says oil companies and others claimed the program would cause an increase in food prices. He says the analysis of the RFS program shows that hasn’t happened.

“Overall, food price inflation in 2007 was 4% and in 2017 it was 1%,” Dinneen said. “The 20 year average is 2.5%. Food price inflation has actually been significantly lower during the past 10 years of the RFS.”

Dinneen says oil companies continue to make inaccurate claims against the RFS, because the companies have lost some of the demand for their product to farmers in the Midwest.

He notes, when the RFS began, opponents were worried corn acres would drastically increase and reduce grassland and forests. But, that hasn’t been the case.

“In 2007, there were 93.5 million acres planted to corn and this past year there were 90.4, so a 3% reduction,” Dinneen said. “We’ve seen an increase in corn production, largely because of increases in corn yield.”

The full report from the Renewable Fuels Association was issued in late December.

The RFS program, known as RFS2, was created under the Energy Independence Security Act 10 years ago.

Nebraska is the nation’s number-two producer of ethanol, behind only Iowa. There are 24 ethanol plants in Nebraska that produce a total of more than two-billion gallons each year.

Thanks to Amie Sites, Brownfield Ag News