NPPC expresses concerns about ethanol fever
The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) in the US
continues to express its concerns about the adverse affects on pork producers of
the rapid expansion of the corn-based ethanol industry.
The NPPC emphasised its concerns at an energy meeting sponsored by the 25x'25
Alliance, a group of mostly agriculture organisations, hoping to get 25% of the
nation's energy from renewable resources by 2025.
The council raised the issue of maize availability for
livestock feed, pointing out that the ethanol industry is projected to use more
than 5 billion bushels of maize once ethanol plants now under construction come
Speaking to those present, Joy Philippi, immediate past
president of NPPC, said, "Pork producers continue to have the jitters over the
rapid expansion of the maize-based ethanol industry and the challenges that
expansion presents to maintaining our competitiveness with domestic and
international meat protein competitors."
"Additionally, we are
concerned about not having an adequate transition period to adjust to the rapid
expansion of the ethanol industry."
Also, said NPPC, the high demand for maize has pushed the
per-bushel price up to $4 from $2 last summer, raising pork producers' feed
input costs to $65 per pig from $35.
With that increase, pork
production may need to decline by as much as 15% to allow the industry to recoup
higher production costs, according to a November 2006 study by Iowa State
University's Center for Agricultural and Rural
â€¢ National Pork Producers Council
â€¢ Iowa State University's Center
for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD)
â€¢ 25 x '25 Alliance
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