All the Corn Farmers Coalition (CFC) wants to do is get policy makers to listen to the real facts about issues affecting America’s largest crop.
For example, “It’s a little known fact that we are growing five times as much corn as our grandfathers did in the 1930s on 20 percent less land,” said CFC Director Mark Lambert during a Thursday teleconference with reporters.
Facts like these are vital as the issue of indirect land use gains traction in ethanol policy decisions on the state and federal levels, according to Ross Korves, economic-policy analyst and expert on farm and trade policy for the research firm ProExporter Network. “As corn farmers get more productive, so does corn’s environmental impact abate,” said Korves. “More productivity per acre means we produce more corn on the same acres. There is no land use effect because we are simply not using more land.”
National Corn Growers Association first vice president Darrin Ihnen says they are concerned because the indirect land use issue has already led to an unfavorable ruling last week for corn ethanol under the California Air Resources Board’s new low carbon fuel standard even though both ethanol and agricultural interests provided compelling arguments that the calculations were flawed and failed to take into account important considerations such as increasing corn yields and credits for distillers grains by-products. On the federal level, EPA is required to make indirect land use calculations as they implement the new Renewable Fuels Standard. “Let’s not make critical decisions like this without all the facts at hand and without a fair comparison of what it takes to make a gallon of gas to a gallon of ethanol,” said Ihnen.
CFC is a recently-formed alliance of the National Corn Growers Association and 10 state corn associations
Listen to the CFC teleconference here: cfc-call-1.mp3
Download the audio here: CFC Press Conference