It’s official. According to government data released today, 2010 was a record-breaking year for exports of ethanol and distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS). Riding a December surge, total ethanol exports ended the year at 397 million gallons, marking a nearly four-fold increase over 2009. Of the 2010 total, 270 million gallons (68%) were classified as denatured ethanol, while the remaining 127 million gallons (32%) were undenatured, non-beverage. These exports are not eligible for the Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit (VEETC), also called the blender’s credit. DDGS exports totaled 9 million metric tons for the year, a 60% increase over 2009 exports and double the level from 2008.
The top importer of U.S. ethanol in 2010 was Canada, with nearly one-third of total exports going to our neighbors to the north. The Netherlands, United Kingdom, India, and United Arab Emirates, respectively, were other top importers. It is also interesting to note Brazil imported nearly 23 million gallons of U.S. ethanol in 2010.
The year finished on a high note. December was a record month for ethanol exports, with total shipments of 72 million gallons. Prior to December, the monthly high had been 48 million gallons in March 2010.
As for DDGS, the top importer in 2010 was China, receiving than one-quarter of U.S. exports. Mexico, Canada, South Korea, and Vietnam, in order, were other top importers.