USDA: Corn use for fuel ethanol up in March

By Erin Voegele | May 27, 2021

The USDA recently released its Grain Crushings and Co-Products Production report for May, reporting that corn use for fuel ethanol in March was up when compared to both the previous month and March 2020.

Total corn consume for alcohol and other uses was 473 million bushels in March, up 25 percent from February and up 1 percent from March 2020. Usage included 91.1 percent for alcohol and 8.9 percent for other uses.

Corn consumed for fuel alcohol reached 420 million bushels, up 26 percent when compared to the previous month, and up 2 percent when compared to the same month of last year. Corn consumed for dry milling fuel production and wet milling fuel production was at 91.5 percent and 8.5 percent, respectively.

The report shows no sorghum was consumed for fuel ethanol production in March. Data for the prior month was withheld to avoid disclosing data for individual operations. In March 2020, 4.64 million hundredweight (cwt) (259,840 tons) of sorghum went to fuel ethanol production.

At dry mills, condensed distillers solubles production fell to 90,530 tons, down from 92,525 tons in February and 99,381 tons in March 2020. Corn oil production increased to 156,903 tons, up from 117,903 tons the previous month and 149,066 tons during the same month of last year. Distillers dried grains production increased to 368,075 tons, up from 262,261 tons in February and 317,411 tons in March 2020. Distillers dried grains with solubles production increased to 1.8 million tons, up from 1.41 million tons in February and 1.67 million tons in March 2020. Distillers wet grains production was at 1.11 million tons, up from 885,932 tons the previous month, but down from 1.27 million tons in March of last year. Modified distillers wet grains production was at 391,913 tons, up from 377,688 tons in February, but down from 478,416 tons in March 2020.

At wet mills, corn germ meal production was at 50,088 tons, up from 44,416 tons in February, but down from 69,960 tons in March 2020. Corn gluten feed production was at 266,308 tons, up from 217,605 tons the previous month, but down from 291,861 tons during the same month of last year. Corn gluten meal production increased to 113,365 tons, up from 97,680 tons in February and 92,269 tons in March 2020. Wet corn gluten feed production was at 206,831 tons, up from 169,005 tons in February, but down from 220,423 tons in March 2020.

At dry and wet mills, carbon dioxide captured increased to 237,819 tons, up from both 182,552 tons in February and 218,593 tons in March 2020.