U.S. exports of denatured and undenatured (non-beverage) ethanol set a new monthly record of 152.5 million gallons (mg) in November, according to government data.

Brazil was the leading destination for U.S. product and accounted for nearly half of total shipments for the month. Canada, Mexico, and the Netherlands were among other top destinations. 

Year-to-date total exports through November stood at 1.02 billion gallons (bg), meaning exports were on pace for a 2011 calendar year total of 1.11 bg. Notably, these exports did not qualify for the ethanol blender’s tax credit, as the ethanol was not blended with gasoline prior to exportation.


“Exports have become an important part of the business model for American ethanol producers,” said Geoff Cooper, vice president of Research and Analysis at the Renewable Fuels Association.  “American ethanol producers are the lowest cost provider of motor fuel today and have ample supplies available to help meet ethanol demand around the globe. While the preference for American producers would be to use more ethanol domestically through use of higher ethanol blends like E15, E30 and E85, overseas markets will remain a viable and important part of America’s ethanol industry.”



In December, Cooper raised the issue of U.S. policies that perversely incent the import of ethanol from Brazil.  Cooper coined the phenomenon the “Ethanol Shuffle".  While import data for November is not yet available, anecdotal evidence suggests the “Ethanol Shuffle” continued in November and will continue into 2012. 

On the co-products side, November exports of distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS) totaled 538,174 metric tons (mt), the lowest monthly tally of the year. China was the top market (140,741 mt), followed by Mexico (117,108 mt), and Canada (53,458 mt). Year-to-date exports of DDGS stood at 7.08 million mt, meaning exports are on pace for 7.72 million mt for the calendar year. That total would be down 14 percent from 2010’s record exports of 9.03 million mt.

For a more detailed analysis go to The E-Xchange Blog.