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Is the bio-fuel boom over?

by Ben Nuelle

Is the Biofuel boom over? One Farm Bureau economist says yes.

Farm Bureau hosted a farm economy seminar Monday morning at their annual convention in Phoenix.

A topic discussed included the bio-fuels market. John Newton is an economist with Farm Bureau. He says ethanol demand has slowed dramatically.

“Just on the biofuels side domestically, however, it is starting to slow down. Ethanol consumption is flat. About 40% of the corn that is produced goes into ethanol. We do see some growth in soybean oil use going into bio-diesel but in general the bio-fuel boom is over.”

Newton says the focus should turn to trade. He says we need to focus on markets besides Canada, Mexico, Japan, and China.

“Those four markets represent over 50 percent of our ag trade and some of those markets are fairly mature as well. In the previous sessions, someone said, ‘Canada really isn’t growing are they?’ So it is some of these other markets are going to provide opportunities.”

Newton adds the key higher commodity prices is reaching new customers overseas in countries with growing populations.

American Farm Bureau Federation wrapped up their annual convention Wednesday.