Corn growers’ impending challenge – Supervisor Chuck Morris

Chuck Morris Guest Opinion – Nov 11, 2021 

Iowa farmers are resilient. They ride the highs and lows of corn and soybean markets every year, but a bleak future may be on the horizon. Imagine if over half of the market for Iowa-grown corn were to disappear.

Between the pandemic, small-refinery waivers, and the emergence of electric vehicles, ethanol producers have encountered an uphill battle. Unless we take deliberate action to make ethanol more viable in the future, an industry that consumes 53% of Iowa’s corn crop could suffer greatly.

Aside from creating a cleaner-burning fuel, ethanol plants produce dried distiller grains to feed our nation’s livestock. Manure from livestock is used to fertilize Iowa corn and so goes the sustainable cycle of American agriculture. Should we abandon the use of ethanol, we would surely disrupt a supply chain with wide-reaching implications for employment and our GDP. The ethanol industry alone supports 340,000 jobs and contributes $43 billion to the national GDP.

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