Biofuels Helping Fuel Cargill’s Profits

John Davis

cargill.jpgEthanol and biodiesel are making “modest” contributions to ag products giant Cargill’s profits… according to numbers released by the U.S.’s largest agricultural company.

This story in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune says the company reports fiscal first-quarter profit rose 83 percent as more soybeans and corn were processed and the company was able to successfully hedge higher grain costs:

Cargill benefited from soaring worldwide demand for soybeans, corn and other agricultural products, more than making up for surging commodity costs and volatile credit markets. Corn prices were 49 percent higher in the quarter than a year earlier, wheat was up 67 percent and soybeans rose 41 percent.

“Cargill was able to handle the volatility,” said Anil Passi, an analyst with Dominion Bond Rating Service in Toronto who follows Cargill’s $9.9 billion in bonds.

Of course, a lot of that increased demand comes from the fact that more corn and soybeans are going to biofuels, which make up about 5 percent of the company’s net income.

Biodiesel, Ethanol, News