Bikers Get up Close and Personal with @EthanolRFA

Chuck Zimmerman 1 Comment

Robert WhiteIn a sign of true dedication to his job, Robert White, Renewable Fuels Association, was on location at the Legendary Buffalo Chip Campground during the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally for the 8th year. His wife, Denita, has also attended these educational events but not this year since she and Robert just had their first baby two days before he came out to work at Free Fuel Happy Hours. We got him home as fast as we could though last week.

These Free Fuel Happy Hours provide a unique opportunity for staff and members of RFA to help educate bikers about putting ethanol in their machine. While they fill up or wait in line they can ask questions and get facts and advice from people like Robert, a biker himself. As you can see in the photo Robert is in a discussion with a biker who had some very good questions about the renewable fuel and how it would perform in his bike. RFA works with a local Co-op to supply an E10 blend with 93 octane. That premium level of fuel is hard to find out around Sturgis.

This educational/promotional opportunity is not a massive expense for RFA and as Robert says, it’s not just about motorcycles. All of the people who ride in to get a free tank of fuel also have other vehicles and machines back home that they put ethanol blended gas into like lawn mowers, leaf blowers and more.

RFA’s sponsorship at the Legendary Buffalo Chip Campground is the longest sponsorship currently. Other exhibitors and sponsors including motorcycle manufacturers like Harley-Davidson and Indian. Robert gets to talk with them in a pretty relaxed atmosphere to build relationships in the industry that work to the benefit of everyone involved in ethanol production.

Learn more about the value RFA receives via this unique promotion in my interview with Robert: Interview with Robert White, RFA

RFA at Sturgis Buffalo Chip 2016 Photos

Audio, biofuels, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Motorcycle, RFA

Grains Council Works for #Ethanol Industry

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

The U.S. Grains Council (USGC) is once again partnering with the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) to co-sponsor the Export Exchange, an international trade conference held every other year that is very focused on the export of the ethanol co-product distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS).

ace-16-erb2“It is the premiere conference worldwide for distillers grains,” said USGC Director of Industry Relations Lyndsey Erb during an interview at last week’s American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) conference.

Nearly 200 international buyers and end-users are expected to be at the event in Detroit, Michigan October 24-26 to meet and build relationships with more than 300 domestic suppliers in attendance over three days of educational sessions and networking opportunities. “We want U.S. suppliers to meet with their customers,” said Erb. “Rather than having to take a trip around the world to meet all of your customers, you can meet them all in Detroit.”

While the Export Exchange is held every other year, USGC is always working on helping to promote and increase exports of U.S. DDGS. In fact, just before she attended the ACE conference last week, Erb was in Bejing working on the DDGS anti-dumping case. She gives an update on that in this interview: Interview with Lindsey Erb, USGC

2016 ACE Annual Ethanol Conference Photo Album

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Cellerate and Enogen Combo Highlighted at #ACE2016

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Advances in cellulosic ethanol technology were a key topic at the recent American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) annual conference, including a collaboration between Syngenta and Iowa-based Cellulosic Ethanol Technologies.

ace-16-cellerateIn a session discussing how corn kernel fiber is leading the way to the development of cellulosic fuels, Quad County Corn Processors (QCCP) Head Engineer Travis Brotherson reported a 26 percent increase in ethanol production after a recently-completed trial using a combination of Cellerate™ process technology and Enogen® corn.

Brotherson said this dramatic increase was achieved by realizing an additional 6 percent yield per bushel from converting kernel fiber into cellulosic ethanol, plus a 20 percent throughput increase by combining Cellerate with Enogen. “These results, and our experience of the past two years, confirm the consistent performance benefits available through Cellerate enhanced by Enogen – and we believe the potential could be even greater,” Brotherson said. “Cellerate can help plants produce more ethanol from an existing asset base, increase total yield of distillers grains corn oil and improve the protein content of feed co-products.”

In 2014, Syngenta announced an agreement with Cellulosic Ethanol Technologies, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of QCCP, to be the exclusive marketer of Cellerate process technology to ethanol plants in North America. QCCP was honored with the Renewable Fuels Association 2015 Industry Award at the 20th Annual National Ethanol Conference for its achievements in advancing the use of cellulosic ethanol technology.

On a webinar hosted by Ethanol Producer Magazine at 2 p.m. Central today (August 17) Brotherson and Dr. Miloud Araba, Head of Enogen Technical Services at Syngenta, will discuss the potential of corn kernel fiber and how new technologies can help ethanol producers achieve significant production and efficiency benefits.

2016 ACE Annual Ethanol Conference Photo Album

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#Ethanol at Sturgis is a Good Deal

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

RFA board members Chuck Woodside and Dana Lewis chat with bikers getting free 10% ethanol fuel

RFA board members Chuck Woodside and Dana Lewis chat with bikers getting free 10% ethanol fuel

As a past chairman and current board member of the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Chuck Woodside of KAAPA Ethanol in Minden, Nebraska wants to make sure that the money the organization is well spent to serve the ethanol industry. After seeing the RFA presence promoting ethanol at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and Buffalo Chip Campground, Woodside believes that fits the bill.

“The RFA has one of the longest sponsor relationships with the Buffalo Chip and I think that has paid off through the years,” said Woodside last week during the RFA-sponsored Free Fuel Happy Hours at The Chip. “Part of the promotion is we give a t-shirt away with the fill up and those have become very popular.” He notes that RFA has a presence on signage around the Chip and on the main stage jumbotron where top names in entertainment perform throughout the week.

In this interview, Woodside also talks about the importance of a strong Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for the industry: Interview with Chuck Woodside, KAAPA Ethanol

RFA at Sturgis Buffalo Chip 2016 Photos

Audio, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Motorcycle, RFA, RFS, Sturgis

Collaboration Needed in Future of Ag Tech

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

zp-nh1Our latest ZimmPoll asked the question, “What will play the biggest role in the future of agriculture?”

During the 2016 InfoAg Conference, Jack Uldrich, acclaimed global futurist, speaker and best-selling author, shared thoughts on what the world may look like in just a few short years. Collaboration rose to the top and shows we need to keep all of the above in mind when talking about the future of agricultural technology.

Here are the poll results:

  • Big data – 18%
  • Social media – 0%
  • Robotics – 7%
  • Biotech – 17%
  • Nanotech – 3%
  • Artificial intelligence – 7%
  • Renewable energy – 13%
  • Precision tech – 14%
  • Collaboration – 21%

Our new ZimmPoll is live and asks the question, Is agriculture still relevant at state fairs?

State fairs are taking place across the country and were originally started with agriculture in mind. But fewer and fewer state fairs have focused their efforts on agriculture. With a growing population more discounted to agriculture than every before, shouldn’t our state fairs be agriculture centered? Is agriculture still relevant at state fairs? Let us know your thoughts.


Paul Dana Award Goes to @Sheetz

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Ron Lamberty, ACE with Mike Lorenz of Sheetz

Ron Lamberty, ACE with Mike Lorenz of Sheetz

The American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) last week presented Sheetz, Inc. with the 2016 Paul Dana Marketing Vision Award for leadership in marketing ethanol. The award was instituted in 2006 in memory of Indy Racing League IndyCar Series driver and biofuels advocate Paul Dana

Sheetz was recognized for their leadership in introducing E15 in 60 of the company’s stores in North Carolina, as well as being one of the first major chains to offer E85 in Pennsylvania and the five other eastern states where Sheetz operates convenience stores. ACE Senior Vice President Ron Lamberty says the retail chain, which has stores mainly in the East Coast and Atlantic based states, was a perfect fit for an award for “marketing vision.”

“I’ve often described the c-store industry as one where ‘everyone wants to be the first to be second.’ In a lot of cases, Sheetz is the company other convenience stores are watching to know what to do next” Lamberty said. “Sheetz is leading again with E15, as they did when they began offering E85 ten years ago, and when they were among the first to bring E10 to the Eastern states where they operate.

Sheetz Executive Vice President of Petroleum Supply Mike Lorenz accepted the award on behalf of the company during the ACE annual meeting in Minneapolis last week. He also participated in a retailer panel at the event.

In this interview, Lorenz talks about the decision to add more fuel choices to their “menu” and how Sheetz customers are responding: Interview with Mike Lorenz, Sheetz

2016 ACE Annual Ethanol Conference Photo Album

ACE, ACE Ethanol Conference, Audio, E15, E85, Ethanol News, Ethanol Report, Retailers

Record #Corn and #Ethanol Production Forecast

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

USDAUSDA’s first crop production forecast based on actual field data is predicting a bin-busting corn crop this year while ethanol production is also on pace to be record high.

Corn production is forecast at a record 15.2 billion bushels, up 11 percent from last year with yields expected to average 175.1 bushels per acre, up 6.7 bushels from 2015. If realized, this will be the highest yield and production on record for the United States. Meanwhile, the U.S. ethanol industry is on pace to break production records this year, according to Department of Energy (DOE) projections released Tuesday. DOE projects 2016 ethanol production will average 980,000 barrels per day, or 15.1 billion gallons.

“This is shaping up to be an historic year,” said Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) president and CEO Bob Dinneen. “Just a decade ago, visionary leaders in the corn and ethanol industries established a goal to produce 15 billion bushels of corn and 15 billion gallons of ethanol by 2015. Ten years later, our nation’s farmers and ethanol producers have made that bold vision into a reality.”

The August World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates Report, also released Friday showing corn ending stocks for the 2016/17 marketing year are expected to be the highest in 29 years at 2.4 billion bushels while corn prices are expected to average just $3.15 per bushel, the lowest in 10 years. National Corn Growers Association president Chip Bowling says these numbers should “be a wake-up call for both Presidential campaigns regarding the economic challenges facing farmers and rural America….We need real solutions that help us access markets, expand biofuel use, and ensure a more sustainable future.”

Both Dinneen and Bowling note that the record production numbers and low prices underscore the importance of continuing to implement the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) as intended by Congress while EPA’s proposal would reduce the 2017 RFS requirement for “renewable fuel” from 15.0 billion gallons to 14.8 billion gallons. “This is not the time to undermine demand for corn and tie the hands of the American farmer. Farmers and ethanol producers made investments and business decisions based on the 2007 law that expanded the RFS, and they expected EPA to follow Congress’ intent in implementing the program,” Dinneen said. “EPA’s proposal is limiting market opportunities for U.S. farmers at a time when the agricultural economy needs a boost.”

corn, Ethanol, Ethanol News, NCGA, RFA, RFS, USDA

#Ethanol Report from 2016 Sturgis

Cindy Zimmerman

ethanol-report-adThe Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) once again partnered with the Buffalo Chip Campground to host the 76th annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, Aug. 8–14 in Sturgis, South Dakota. RFA Vice President of Industry Relations Robert White was joined at this year’s event by association board members Dana Siefkes-Lewis of Redfield Energy in South Dakota and Chuck Woodside of KAAPA Ethanol in Nebraska. In this Ethanol Report, they all talk about the importance of educating motorcyclists about using ethanol in their engines.

Listen to the Ethanol Report: Ethanol Report from 2016 Sturgis

RFA at 2016 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Photo Album

Audio, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Ethanol Report, Motorcycle, RFA, Sturgis

Bobby Likis Features Robert White Live From Sturgis

Joanna Schroeder

On left, RFA's Robert White, a motorcyclist veteran shares ethanol's story with a biker during the 76th annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.

On left, RFA’s Robert White, a motorcyclist veteran, shares ethanol’s story with a biker during the 76th annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.

It’s been a great week for the 76th annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and once again biker enthusiasts embraced E10 with free fuel (10 percent ethanol and 90 percent gas) and raved about their performance. Speaking of motorcycles, Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) veteran motorcyclist and expert Robert White was at Sturgis once again. While there White will be a live guest on Bobby Likis Car Clinic, Saturday, August 13, 2016 beginning at 10:25 am ET / 8:25 am MT.

Said Likis, Sturgis Rally is on my bucket list! Robert will be our eyes and ears there on Saturday, as we talk fun, motors and E10.

During the show White will bring news of the Rally to Car Clinic listeners and viewers, including a recap of the RFA’s sponsored 9th annual Legends Ride where riders glide from Deadwood through the scenic Black Hills to the gates of the Sturgis Buffalo Chip. White will also spotlight a most popular “happy hour” for riders: Free Fuel Happy Hour, where, compliments of RFA, bikers gas up with a free tank of 93 octane E10 for their rides. And wow do the bikers line up for E10!

21413-bobby-likis-car-clinic-300x149I’ve been going to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally for the past eight years and it’s a great event to educate the motorcycle community on the benefits of ethanol,” said White. “E10 is a safe and reliable fuel blend and is covered under warranty by every major motorcycle manufacturer in the market. I look forward to this year’s event, to teaching riders about the advantages of ethanol blended fuel, and to sharing Sturgis news with Bobby’s listeners and viewers.

White is not only a motorcyclist veteran, he is also a veteran of the U.S. Army and an official member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion. To view White’s interview in its entirety, visit on Saturday, August 13, 10:25a ET / 8:25a MT.

biofuels, Education, Ethanol, Ethanol News, Motorcycle, RFA, Sturgis

Jennings Offers #ACE16 Highlights, #Ethanol Next Steps

Joanna Schroeder

It came as no surprise that the 29th annual ACE Ethanol Conference was a huge hit with attendees this week. One comment that was often heard was how great the content was. Attendees were also pumped-up about the efforts of American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) to help get E15 at pumps across the country. After the conference concluded, I wace-16-jennings1as able to sit down with ACE Executive Vice President Brian Jennings to get his take on this year’s event.

I first asked him what he thought some of the highlights were this week. He said one, in his view, was the re-commitment that the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is important, but that the industry needs to continue to build momentum for other ways to increase the use of ethanol. Some of these ways include exports and increasing octane. “I think there was a greater appreciation for the hurdles we’re going to have to clear if we’re going to actually use octane to drive demand,” said Jennings.

Out of the octane discussion, Jennings said there were some areas that were brought to light about where the industry needs to be more involved. One area is the industry needs to be more involved with ATSM.

(Left to right) Merle Anderson shares his thoughts on his namesake award while ACE's Brian Jennings looks on.

(Left to right) Merle Anderson shares his thoughts on his namesake award while ACE’s Brian Jennings looks on.

Jennings said he was very gratified about the Merle Anderson award, and the fact that Merle Anderson, at 85 years old, was able to come back to the ACE Conference. This year’s award was given to Lars Herseth who for many years has served on the ACE board. Jennings said the awards really highlight how great some of the people are in the industry.

So what’s on the horizon for ACE? Jennings said another big ad buy in Washington, D.C. is in the works to promote the Reid Vapor Pressure fix required to offer E15 across the country year round. Jennings said they are really going to need to get down in the weeds on the CAFE greenhouse gas rule making. “EPA doesn’t want this to be a pathway for higher octane fuels but the auto makers have an interest in enabling ethanol to be pathway for high octane fuels as do we,” he noted. In addition, ACE will continue to work with retailers to help them understand the math of E15 and flex fuels.

In closing, Jennings thanked his six staff members for their team effort as well as thanked the volunteer members who helped, which he said is really heartwarming. “They make me really proud,” he added.

Learn more about Brian’s thoughts on this year’s ACE Ethanol Conference here: Interview with Brian Jennings, ACE

2016 ACE Annual Ethanol Conference Photo Album

ACE, ACE Ethanol Conference, Audio, Ethanol