Missouri corn growers say repealing the state ethanol standard would be a costly mistake.
The CEO of the Missouri Corn Growers Association says that while recent political proposals claim repealing the statewide ethanol standard would lower fuel and food prices, the effect would be quite the opposite.
“Simple economics dictate that increasing supply helps reduce price,” said Gary Marshall. “Utilizing a fuel produced and refined in Missouri is part of the reason our state has some of the lowest gas prices in the nation.”
The Missouri Renewable Fuel Standard requires gasoline to be blended with 10 percent ethanol when ethanol is cheaper than conventional gasoline. This price provision means ethanol cannot increase the cost to consumers, Marshall said.
He notes that blaming ethanol for skyrocketing food and fuel costs is not supported by the facts. According to figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, while households are facing a 23 percent increase in their total food costs, they are facing a 335 percent increase in their gasoline costs since 2002.
“If fuel prices had increased at the same rate as food, we would only be paying $1.39 per gallon for gasoline,” Marshall says. “And while grocery bills are going up due mainly to increasing transportation, labor and marketing expenses, Missouri’s food costs remain inline with other neighboring states.”