Indiana Corn Growers Discuss Year-Round E15, Mexico GM Corn Ban on Policy Podcast


In what’s becoming an annual tradition, EPA Administrator Michael Regan announced last week a summertime sales waiver for E15 or Unleaded 88, allowing the fuel to be sold year-round nationwide.

“It’s a cleaner fuel. It’s more efficient and it costs less,” says Indiana Corn Growers Association Senior Director of Industry Affairs Steve Howell. “A lot of times it’s five to ten cents less than regular 87. So, it’s good for the farmer, it’s good for the environment, and it’s good for the consumer.”

Howell is one of the guests on the latest Indiana Ag Policy Podcast from Hoosier Ag Today. He says it’s frustrating that this has to happen each year, especially since E15 is already allowed to be sold year-round in some parts of the country.

“So, areas with higher air pollution can sell it year-round because it is a cleaner fuel, but because of frankly, some conflicting bureaucratic rules, it’s not allowed in other areas. So, very frustrating that we’re having to go back every year to have this waiver applied. That’s why we’re pushing for a legislative fix. That is building momentum.”

Howell credits Indiana Congressmen Baird and Carson for being part of that legislation awaiting action.

Also on the Indiana Ag Policy Podcast, Hancock County farmer Chris Cherry, president of the Indiana Corn Growers Association, describes the impact to Indiana farmers from Mexico’s ban on white corn.

“Basically, our exports on white corn are down 87% in 2023, and down about 12% on corn in general.”

Cherry also discusses the Farm Bill and how he’d like to see it get updated to match what farmers are dealing with now, not what farmers were facing back in 2018 when it passed.

“I mean, right now, local ethanol plants are around $4.30 for corn, and it probably costs $5.30 to put out an acre of corn when you factor rent into the equation. So, right now, we’re penciling in $100 an acre loss.”

The Indiana Ag Policy Podcast can be heard below or in the free HAT mobile app on iPhone or Android devices.