Ethanol from Genetically Modified Corn

Biotechnology industry giant Monsanto, best known for their somewhat contentious Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) is teaming up with General Motors and the National Ethanol Vehicle Coalition (NEVC) to deliver what the company calls “improved” corn for the dry mill ethanol industry, which aims to drive increased fuel ethanol demand and expand fuel ethanol infrastructure to support that demand.

Henning Illinois – September 29, 2003 [] “This announcement underscores Monsanto’s commitment to strengthening the demand for bioenergy in the United States and, in turn, creating new markets for our customers’ products,” said Kerry Preete, lead of Monsanto’s U.S. Crop Production business. “This collaboration is a major step forward for the industry and we feel that it will aid in the development of rural economic growth.” Monsanto said the collaborative would provide a major boost to the U.S. ethanol industry, through Monsanto’s Fuel Your Profits program, by generating a multi-million dollar investment over the next two years. This investment will be aimed at fueling ethanol profits from corn planting to ethanol processing and beyond. The Fuel Your Profits program takes advantage of Monsanto’s research capabilities by promoting improved corn hybrids for the dry mill ethanol industry offered through the Processor Preferred High Fermentable Corn (HFC) brand. However, the Fuel Your Profits program is about more than just providing products to the industry, Monsanto notes. “We wanted to provide a way for corn growers and ethanol plant owners to take advantage of Monsanto’s advancements while increasing ethanol demand and expanding the ethanol fuel infrastructure in our country,” said Amy Rutherford, Processor Preferred business manager. “The Fuel Your Profits program is designed to increase the profitability potential of both corn growers and ethanol plants.” Participants in the Fuel Your Profits program will be eligible for reward certificates off of a negotiated purchase price of General Motors’ E85 vehicles as well as incentives to increase the number of E85 fuel pump stations that are located throughout the country. “Monsanto has responded to corn growers’ requests for programs that provide value added opportunities with Fuel Your Profits. This is a sound, sensible way to help grow the ethanol industry,” said National Corn Growers Association President Fred Yoder. “The program offers a science-based analysis by which the Processor Preferred system determines a list of High Fermentable Corn. Ethanol plants and corn growers can utilize this list to their mutual benefit. According to John Gaydash, General Motor’s Director, Marketing of GM Fleet and Commercial Operations, “General Motors has more than one million vehicles on the road today capable of burning E85. We have demonstrated our interest in increasing ethanol demand through our E85 awareness efforts with NEVC. Fuel Your Profits ties nicely with these efforts.” To date, there are 17 dry mill ethanol plants participating in the Fuel Your Profits program. These plants are located throughout the country, and will collectively consume grain from 1.5 million acres of the 2004 harvest. Through the Fuel Your Profits collaboration, Monsanto will also provide ethanol plants access to and use of a Near Infrared proprietary measurement tool developed under ISO 17025 compliance by Monsanto’s crop analytics scientists. The tool will help plant managers and growers understand which corn hybrids yield more ethanol in the dry mill process. Such information allows ethanol plants to optimize efficiency and output by providing an indicator of the fermentability of corn at the front end of their process. Grower enrollment in the Fuel Your Profits program is currently underway, and ends February 1, 2004.
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