Understanding Inflation

In Current News, Ethanol, Food Prices, Food vs Fuel, Media by Ken

One of the benefits of the Internet is that traditional media can use it for projects that just don’t technologically fit with their format. Here’s a fascinating example from the New York Times, especially when we’re looking at this debate over food prices. You can drill down into each piece of this pie chart, wherein you learn that fuel prices …

Don’t Throw Corn Ethanol Under the Bus

In Audio, Current News, Ethanol by Cindy

The development of alternative feedstocks for ethanol doesn’t mean that corn ethanol will be thrown under the bus, according to Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer. Speaking to farm broadcasters in Washington on Tuesday, Schafer talked about the importance of ethanol today. “We’ve passed Renewable Fuels Standards in this country that are important,” he said. “We cannot meet those demands with (only) …

What World Bank Report Says – and Doesn’t Say

In Current News, Food Prices, International by Cindy

The World Bank report released earlier this month has gotten quite a bit of media attention lately, especially regarding its concern about biofuels production. During a press conference with President Bush Tuesday, a reporter said, “The World Bank says about 85 percent of the increase in corn price since 2002 is due to biofuel — increased demand for biofuels.” Near …

Presidential Press Conference

In Current News, Ethanol, Food Prices by Cindy

Higher food and energy costs were topics during a presidential press briefing Tuesday morning. President Bush noted that the high price of gasoline is going to spur more investment in ethanol as an alternative to gasoline. “And the truth of the matter is it’s in our national interests that our farmers grow energy, as opposed to us purchasing energy from …

Growing Positive on Corn

In Current News, Farming by Ken

In March 2007, the USDA stated that growers intended to plant 90.5 million acres of corn. Given that farmers had planted 78.3 million acres in 2006, this was a very optimistic prediction. This past month, the projection from USDA was 86 million acres, down from last year but still way above what was seen before. High input costs, especially fertilizer, …

Corn at the Ball Park

In Current News, Farming, New Products by Cindy

Corn will be playing in the major leagues with the boys of summer this year. Some of the nation’s major league baseball teams are adopting cups made from corn starch this season to help quench the thirst of fans and be more environmentally-friendly at the same time. The Pittsburgh Pirates, for example, have announced a new greening initiatives program called …

T. Boone Pickens Endorses Ethanol

In Current News, Ethanol, Media by Ken

An editorial in today’s Wisconsin State Journal. Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens, who once scoffed at ethanol, recently told the CNBC financial news network that he now supports increased production of the homegrown, renewable fuel. Pickens cited the $1 billion a day that America spends on imported oil. The editorial writers appear to have been reading our blog. We’ll give …

Ethanol Responds to Scam Article

In Current News, Ethanol by Cindy

The Ethanol Promotion and Information Council (EPIC) has responded to the current Time Magazine cover story “The Clean Energy Scam.” In a letter to the editor of Time, EPIC executive director Toni Nuernberg says the article makes corn-based ethanol “the scapegoat of the week.” She notes that the studies alluded to in the article, although not specifically referenced, (authored by …

How Much Corn Will Farmers Plant?

In Current News, Ethanol, General, Media by Cindy

That’s the multi-million dollar question on the minds of lots of people right now – one that will be answered to some extent by the USDA’s first educated guess on Monday morning when the prospective plantings report is released. Business Week did an article today about those who are eagerly anticipating the report – from livestock producers to the ethanol …

Sweet Hyperbole

In Current News, Ethanol, Food vs Fuel by Cindy

The chief executive officer of the world’s largest food and drink company has given new meaning to the word hyperbole. Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, CEO of Swiss food giant Nestle, is quoted in various news reports saying, “If as predicted we look to use biofuels to satisfy 20 percent of the growing demand for oil products, there will be nothing left to …