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An ethanol export promotion strategy developed in consultation with industry partners and the U.S. Department of Agriculture was presented to U.S. Grains Council (USGC) members from throughout the grains sector this week at USGC’s 55th Annual Board of Delegates Meeting in Montreal, Canada.

The Council has been working in partnership with USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) and Growth Energy to develop country-by-country marketing plans for U.S. ethanol in a handful of near-term markets.

“In 2014, the Council and its partners completed in-depth market assessments in Southeast Asia, Peru, Panama, Japan and Korea that produced valuable information used develop this strategy,” said USGC Chairman Ron Gray.

“Our plans in these markets continue to develop, and we are carrying on market assessment work in places like Canada and the European Union. However, we are also moving forward aggressively with market development and policy-focused work in countries like the Philippines that have the potential to increase demand for U.S. ethanol in the near term.”

Ethanol was the subject of a general session panel at the meeting, including input from Growth Energy CEO Tom Buis, RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen and Green Plains Renewable Energy Executive Vice President for Ethanol Marketing Steve Bleyl, moderated by USGC’s Chief Economist Mike Dwyer, a leading global biofuels analyst.

Ethanol export plans were explored in more depth during the Ethanol Advisory Team (A-Team) meeting, comprised of members from throughout the value chain, and a breakout session focused specifically on USGC’s ongoing ethanol-focused programs.

“U.S. ethanol exports are becoming increasingly vital to our stakeholders’ bottom line, which makes finding new markets for U.S. ethanol is a priority for the Council,” Gray said. “This plan shows our and our partners’ commitments to making that happen.”