Renewed Demand


The history for the biofuels industry in this country is filled with extreme highs and lows.  Corn and soybean growers have committed a lot of time and money into building markets for ethanol and biodiesel. Despite overwhelming odds against them, they have seen tremendous progress and now may be nearing their greatest success to date.  While we wait for the Supreme Court ruling on RFS waivers, there are encouraging signs for both fuels moving forward.  EPA administrator Michael Regan has provided hope with encouraging words acknowledging the role of biofuels to help reach climate goals set by the Biden administration.  Even with the promotion of electric vehicles, government officials seem to realize the importance of biofuels and their immediate impact on reducing carbon.  A national low carbon fuels standard, rather than a patchwork of state mandates, would go a long ways to helping reach climate goals and biofuels are positioned to make that happen.  Already we are seeing a surge in demand for renewable diesel providing a growing market for soy oil.  In fact many are predicting a surge for the biodiesel industry similar to what we saw a few years ago for ethanol.  If so, soybean growers could see their dreams come true.  Years ago, faced with a glut of soy oil dragging down soybean markets, soybean growers invested in developing biodiesel.  The industry has faced many challenges including early on some performance and price issues plus inconsistent government support but now seems poised to take a giant step forward.  The future looks promising.  Still those in the industry know that success can’t be taken for granted.  Strong resistance by the oil industry and fickle government support probably aren’t going away.  Corn and soybean growers have already defied the odds and accomplished more than skeptics ever imagined.  While some push for future solutions to meet climate goals, the biofuels industry is ready to provide those solutions right now.  Corn and soybean growers plant and harvest each year.  Hopefully they are about to see a good return not only on seeds planted this year but also on those planted many years ago.