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Record Upsurge in U.S. Ethanol Heading to Brazil Dominates January Trade Picture; Distillers Grains Exports Building

According to government data released today and analyzed by the RFA, January exports of 121.8 million gallons (mg) of U.S. ethanol registered as the third highest monthly volume on record in five years–behind October 2016 (131.6 mg) and November 2016 (121.9 mg). Most American ethanol landed in Brazil (58.9 mg, or 48%), Canada (26.4 mg, or 22%), India (11.1 mg, or 9%) and the United Arab Emirates (9%). January trade data implies annualized exports of 1.462 billion gallons, which would be a record level.

Exports of American undenatured fuel ethanol increased by 71% over December to an unparalleled volume of 92.9 mg. Two-thirds of those shipments (58.9 mg) arrived in Brazil, representing the highest monthly volume since the dataset began in 2012, and also besting the country’s previous high of 48.9 mg imported in November 2016. Other top markets like India (11.1 mg), the UAE (10.8 mg), the Philippines (5.8 mg) and Mexico (3.5 mg) also upped their purchases in January, with the UAE likewise buying a record amount of undenatured ethanol. Denatured fuel ethanol exports in January were 99.8 mg, down 25% from the prior month. Canada was again the leading importer with 92% of the market, with Peru (1.2 mg) and Colombia (985,267 gallons) capturing most of the remaining exports.

Sales of undenatured ethanol for non-fuel use fell to the lowest level on record, down 95% to 168,534 gallons. Canada (23%), South Korea (19%), the Philippines (17%) and Mexico (17%) were our largest customers. January sales of 2.4 mg in denatured ethanol for non-fuel use dropped back 57%, shipped primarily to Canada (8.6 mg, or 96%).

For all intents and purposes, January was absent of any fuel ethanol imports–save 8 gallons tendered to South Africa. In 2016, the U.S. shipped less than 35 mg the entire year, without a drop entering our borders in the final quarter. Based on January 2017 data, the United States would import under 100 gallons this year and net exports would continue to new heights.

Shipments of U.S. distillers grains at the start of 2017 increased by 9% over December as 937,628 metric tons (mt) were purchased by 38 countries. Mexico held firm as top dog for the second month with 177,857 mt (19%) heading south of the border, a 10% increase over December. Turkey again bought about 35% more DDG than the prior month, with 125,757 mt sold (13% of U.S. market share). China increased its purchases of U.S. DDG to 87,310 mt (9% of U.S. exports) after sales to that country bottomed out by the close of 2016 following imposition of the anti-dumping and countervailing duties against the United States. Other top markets for U.S. DDG were South Korea (70,065 mt), Thailand 62,321 mt) and Canada (58.028 mt). Vietnam’s new phytosanitary/fumigation requirements eliminated that market in January for U.S. shippers with only 520 mt entering the country compared to an average of 100,000 mt per month in 2016. Given total January DDG exports, the United States is on track to ship 11.25 million mt.

 

 

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RFA, Department of Commerce Hosting Program to Match U.S. Ethanol Sellers, International Buyers

SAN DIEGO — For the second consecutive year, the Renewable Fuels Association is partnering with the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration to host an International Buyer Program (IBP) today at the National Ethanol Conference. The program is designed to introduce U.S. ethanol sellers to foreign buyers in an effort to expand U.S. exports.

Through the department’s network of offices in U.S. embassies and consulates worldwide, the IBP recruits pre-screened foreign buyer delegations and brings them to selected trade shows and conferences in the United States, connecting U.S. companies with international buyers.

At this year’s IBP, 18 international companies are scheduled to attend from seven top ethanol export markets: China, South Korea, Peru, Mexico, Colombia, India and Brazil. Sellers from 18 U.S. ethanol producers and marketing companies are also scheduled to attend.

“With U.S. ethanol exports topping more than 1 billion gallons last year, the IBP has become an important and helpful tool to help expand our domestic industry,” said RFA General Counsel Ed Hubbard, who is organizing the effort.  “The highlight of this program will be individualized business-to-business meetings, giving both buyers and sellers the opportunity to directly interact. This is a highly sought-after event and we look forward to helping to connect trading partners around the globe.”

ITA staff will be available to assist U.S. existing and potential ethanol exporters and the program will also include key discussions on Mexico’s energy reforms, as well as a Latin America Roundtable to discuss ethanol and trade policy in the region.

For more information on the program, visit IBP.NationalEthanolConference.com.

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New RFA Report Shows U.S. Distillers Grains Exports Reached 11.48 Million Metric Tons in 2016

WASHINGTON — U.S. exports of distillers grains (DG) — a high protein co-product of dry mill ethanol production used to feed livestock and poultry — totaled 11.48 million metric tons (MMT) in 2016, down 10 percent from 2015’s record-high but still the second-highest on record, according to a 10-page summary of 2016 ethanol co-product trade data published today by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA). DG exports were shipped to 50 countries on five continents last year.

According to the report, an estimated 31 percent of U.S. DG production was exported in 2016, meaning one out of every three tons produced was shipped to foreign markets. China was the leading destination for U.S. DG, followed by Mexico, Vietnam and South Korea. However, U.S. DG exports to China plunged 63 percent in 2016 compared to 2015, as the country implemented anti-dumping and countervailing duties against U.S. product. Meanwhile, shipments to nine of the other top 10 markets experienced growth in 2016. In fact, DG exports to Mexico, Vietnam, South Korea, Turkey, and Thailand grew by a combined 2.06 MMT in 2016 — equivalent to the annual DG production of 10 average-sized ethanol plants.

“Distillers grains and other co-products have become an enormously important component of the global feed market. This report underscores that our co-products are in high demand in every corner of the world,” said Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Bob Dinneen. “Unfortunately, we saw a slight downturn in total exports in 2016 because of China’s protectionist actions to shut out U.S. distillers grains. Last week, RFA and our partnering organizations sent a letter to President Trump, alerting him to China’s unfair and illegitimate trade barriers, and urging the incoming U.S. Trade Representative to address the issue. We remain concerned with China’s actions and look forward to the administration’s response to ensure free and fair trade between our countries.”

Among other facts from the RFA report:

  • S. DG exports had a total value of $2.19 billion in 2016, down 27 percent from 2015 and the lowest in four years. DG export prices averaged $191 per MT, down 19 percent from 2015 and the lowest in six years;
  • While U.S. DG exports to East Asia were down, shipments to other global regions surged. In particular, Southeast Asia and the Middle East experienced dramatic growth;
  • S. exports of corn gluten feed (CGF) — a co-product from wet mill ethanol — rebounded to a five-year high in 2016. CGF exports were up 43 percent over 2015 levels. Ireland was the top market, receiving 27 percent of total U.S. CGF exports, while Turkey and Israel were other top markets; and
  • Total exports of corn and corn-based ethanol co-products tallied 73 million metric tons in 2016, the highest on record.

The new report is a companion to RFA’s 2016 ethanol trade summary published last week.

View RFA’s co-product trade summary here.

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USGC, RFA, Growth Energy Urge Administration to Address China Trade Tariffs on Ethanol, DDGs

WASHINGTON — In a letter to President Donald Trump this week, the U.S. Grains Council (USGC), Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) and Growth Energy are asking for help “in urgently addressing China’s recent implementation of protectionist trade barriers that are shutting out U.S. exports of ethanol and distillers dried grains (DDGS).” Specifically, the three groups are asking the incoming U.S. Trade Representative to put China’s recent actions near the top of the administration’s China trade agenda.

In September 2016, after a nine-month investigation, China imposed a preliminary anti-dumping duty of 33.8 percent against U.S. DDGS and a countervailing duty of 10 – 10.7 percent. In a final ruling last month, China increased its DDGS anti-dumping duty to 42.2 – 53.7 percent and its DDGS countervailing duty to 11.2 – 12 percent. Additionally, the tariffs on U.S. ethanol have increased from 5 percent to 30 – 40 percent.

“It is widely believed that raising these tariffs will put an immediate end to ethanol exports to China, erasing the significant progress our industry made in developing that market over the past several years,” wrote the groups to Trump. “[W]e respectfully ask that reform of these punitive ethanol tariff rates be included in any potential upcoming trade negotiations with China.”

China has grown to be a top export market for U.S. DDGS. In 2015, the country imported 6.5 million metric tons of the ethanol co-product, worth $1.6 billion and accounting for 51 percent of total U.S. DDGS exports. By the end of 2016, China had become the U.S. ethanol industry’s third-largest export market, receiving nearly 20 percent of total exports. Nearly 200 million gallons of ethanol worth more than $300 million were shipped to China last year.

As the letter explained, China’s recent actions have contributed to lower prices for ethanol and DDGS. Ethanol prices have fallen 15 percent since mid-December 2016 while DDGS prices have fallen steadily since the summer of 2016. DDGS prices are currently approximately 40 percent lower than in June 2016.

“President Trump’s message of ‘America First’ with regard to trade policy resonated with the U.S. ethanol industry and farmers across the country,” said RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen. “China’s growing demand for protein and renewable fuel has triggered significant investment to meet their needs.  The sudden and unnecessary reversal in China’s trade policy, and the barriers to U.S. imports they have imposed, have jeopardized our industry and penalized Chinese consumers.  They need to end.  We look forward to working with the President and his Administration to restore free and fair trade to the betterment of both.”

“The U.S. Grains Council has worked for 35 years in China to help promote export of U.S. grains and their products and, as importantly, the development of the Chinese agriculture sector. We value these partnerships, however several recent moves in China policy are concerning,” said Tom Sleight, USGC president and CEO. “We are working with our industry and will work with the Trump Administration to get our relationship back on an even and fair footing.”

“Growth Energy is extremely disappointed with the decision by China to subject U.S. DDGS to anti-dumping and countervailing duties,” said Growth Energy CEO, Emily Skor. “While DDGS sales into other markets have partially offset the reduction in U.S. shipments to China, the economic loss to the industry and U.S. farmers is significant and underscores the uncertainty of China’s reliability as a trade partner. We will continue working with all parties on this important relationship and look forward to the opportunity of revisiting this decision in the future.”

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Ethanol and DDGS Exports Cap Off 2016 with Strong December Volumes

After experiencing two months of unprecedented volumes, U.S. ethanol exports pitched downward 20% at the close of 2016, with 98.0 million gallons (mg) shipped out, according to government data released today. Brazil and Canada were the top destinations in December, receiving 42.5 mg (43%) and 27.3 mg (28%) respectively. Peru (6.1 mg), Nigeria (6.0 mg), the Philippines (3.7 mg), and South Korea (3.6 mg) were other leading importers of U.S. ethanol. In calendar year 2016, American ethanol producers exported 1.05 billion gallons—up 25% from 2015 and the second-highest annual total on record. Two-thirds of all shipments were sold to The Big Three—Brazil (26%), Canada (25%) and China (17%)—with remaining quantities dispersed among 75 other countries.

Denatured fuel ethanol exports totaled 34.9 mg in December, down 12% from the prior month and resting lower than recent averages. At 25.2 mg, Canada was once again the leading importer of denatured product with 72% of the market. Brazil increased its purchases to 6.5 mg (19%), as did Peru (3.1 mg), but China bowed out completely. December sales of 54.2 mg in undenatured fuel ethanol fell 31% from the prior month’s record-breaking high as Brazil scaled back to 36.0 mg, although still maintaining its foothold in market share (66%). The Philippines (3.7 mg), Peru (3.0 mg) and Nigeria (2.7 mg) were other top spots for undenatured fuel exports.

Sales of undenatured ethanol for non-fuel use returned to hefty levels, up 140% to 3.4 mg, as South Korea (2.7 mg) and Colombia (534,620 gallons) purchased their largest monthly volumes to-date. December sales of 5.5 mg in denatured ethanol for non-fuel use regained 31% over the prior month, shipped primarily to Nigeria (3.3 mg) and Canada (2.0 mg).

December was absent of any fuel ethanol imports—the third month in a row and the fourth time in 2016. As a result, the United States saw an average of less than 3 mg per month enter its borders the entire year, for a total of 33.7 mg and the second lowest level on record. Likewise, net exports have gained a new threshold.

Trade sanctions were likely responsible for much of the late-year deterioration in U.S. DDG export market and reshuffling of top customers. Mexico took over as the new leader in December with 161,165 metric tons (mt), despite an 18% decrease from prior month volumes. South Korea opened its doors to more U.S. DDG (up 27% to 96,573 mt), as did Turkey (up 35% to 93,669 mt) and Thailand (up 5% to 86,706 mt). China’s imposition of anti-dumping and countervailing duties against U.S. DDGS continued to erode that market, such that less than 60,000 mt entered the country in December. Similarly, Vietnam’s new phytosanitary/fumigation requirements reduced U.S. exports to less than one-tenth the November shipments. For the full calendar year, China did end up as the top market, receiving 2.4 million mt, or 21%, of the 11.48 million total U.S. DDG exports. Mexico was the No. 2 market at 1.9 million mt (17%), while Vietnam (1.2 million mt), South Korea (923,709 mt), and Turkey (789,613 mt) rounded out the top 5. The remaining third of all exports were scooped up by 45 other countries across the globe.

The Renewable Fuels Association released a new statistical report today to provide details on top export destinations, shifts in the marketplace, import volumes, the value of exports, and other key data regarding U.S. ethanol and co-products trade in 2016.

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U.S. Ethanol Exports Continue to Surge in November, as Shipments to Brazil Swell

The United States exported 121.9 million gallons (mg) of ethanol in November—down 7% from October’s huge total, but still the third-largest monthly total in five years, according to government trade data released today and analyzed by the Renewable Fuels Association. Brazil was the top market again in November, followed by Canada and China. Year-to-date exports stood at 947.4 mg, implying an annual total of 1.034 billion gallons for calendar year 2016.

Shipments to Brazil jumped to 50.9 mg in November, representing 42% of the monthly total and making Brazil the top destination for U.S. ethanol for the second straight month. Exports to Brazil have been rising steadily since May, when the country recorded 6 mg of imports from the U.S. Canada scaled back from the prior month as 24.8 mg (20% of U.S. ethanol exports) moved north of the border in November. Meanwhile China increased its purchases of U.S. ethanol, pulling in 19.8 mg (16%) and the country’s largest monthly volume since April. With over three-fourths of total exports heading to the Big Three, the remaining volumes headed to India (11.3 mg, or 9%), Peru (5.1 mg, or 4%), South Korea (3.9 mg, or 3%) and Mexico (2.8 mg, or 2%). With only one month left in the calendar year, it’s still a toss-up between Canada and Brazil as our largest customer for 2016 as each maintains 24% of U.S. ethanol export market share through November, with China falling behind at 19%.

Sales of undenatured fuel ethanol in November increased by 9% over last month’s record-breaking level to a new high of 76.0 mg. Brazil’s draw of 48.9 mg was equivalent to two-thirds of all undenatured exports and a 22% increase over the prior month. The remaining undenatured export volume was primarily shared by India (11.2 mg), China (6.6 mg), South Korea (3.8 mg), Mexico (2.5 mg) and Peru (2.1 mg). November exports of U.S. denatured fuel ethanol were 41.5 mg, denoting a 13 mg (23%) decline from October. The primary export markets were Canada (23.4 mg, or 56%) and China (13.2 mg, or 32%), with Peru (3.0 mg) and Brazil (1.9 mg) taking up much of the remainder.

Sales of denatured ethanol for non-fuel use lost some of the momentum gained the prior month with 3.8 mg shipped, a 29% decrease. Nigeria (2.3 mg) and Canada (1.4 mg) maintained their grip on exports with 97% of market share combined. November sales of undenatured fuel for non-fuel, non-beverage use decreased by 75%, returning to a more normal volume of 525,682 gallons. Mexico (224,578 gal.), Singapore (86,240 gal.) and India (65,509 gal.) are the largest importers.

As for ethanol imports, November was the third month this year with no fuel ethanol entering the United States. Stagnant year-to-date fuel ethanol imports of 33.7 mg suggest the U.S. is on pace to import roughly 37 mg in 2016, the lowest since 2010.

U.S. exports of distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS)—the animal feed co-product from dry mill ethanol production—experienced another month of modest growth, up 1% to 1,006,879 metric tons (mt). Fading Chinese import demand has been replaced by new export opportunities parsed out in smaller shares in several markets across the globe. Vietnam was the top importer of U.S. DDGS in November, buying 242,565 mt—nearly a quarter of all U.S. exports and twice the volume brought into the country the prior month. However, new phytosanitary/fumigation requirements took effect in Vietnam in December, meaning shipments to that market likely slid following the November boom. Exports to Mexico saw a 50% increase over October sales, translating to 196,968 mt (20% of exports) heading south of the border. Thailand (86,706 mt, or 9%), South Korea (75,895 mt, or 8%) and Turkey (69,350 mt, or 7%) remained consistent U.S. trading partners, while Chinese imports slunk to a two-year monthly low of 61,575 mt (6%). Through November, DDGS exports stood at 10.6 million mt, indicating an annualized total of 11.6 million mt.

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October U.S. Ethanol Exports Continue Meteoric Rise While Import Market Fizzles

In October, the United States exported the largest monthly volume of ethanol since December 2011, according to government trade data released today and analyzed by the Renewable Fuels Association. Shipments totaled 131.6 million gallons (mg), up 32% over September and 69% higher than August exports. Brazil reappeared as our top customer in October as exports swelled by 25 mg over the prior month to 42.7 mg, capturing a third of U.S. shipments. October exports to Canada also grew by 25% as 35.0 mg (27% of the U.S. export market) crossed the border. Other large U.S. customers included India (16.5 mg, or 13%), China (10.6 mg, or 8%), the Philippines (6.3 mg, or 5%), Peru (4.8 mg, or 4%) and Mexico (3.87 mg, or 3%). Canada, Brazil and China continue to vie for top billing as the largest U.S. ethanol customer in 2016, accounting for two-thirds of all exports so far. Year-to-date exports stood at 825.5 mg, implying an annual total of 990.6 mg for calendar year 2016.

Sales of undenatured fuel ethanol in October expanded by 36% to a record-breaking 70.0 mg. Brazil’s purchase of 40.0 mg (57% of the U.S. export market) plus sales of 16.5 mg to India (24%) were significantly responsible for moving the needle. Larger volumes also headed to the Philippines (6.3 mg), Mexico (3.7 mg) and Saudi Arabia (2.5 mg). October exports of U.S. denatured fuel ethanol increased by 23% over the prior month to 54.2 mg. Canada (33.2 mg, or 61%), China (10.6 mg, or 19%) and Peru (4.8 mg, or 9%) were again the primary markets.

Sales of denatured ethanol for non-fuel use rocketed to 5.4 mg in October with Nigeria reappearing in the marketplace (3.4 mg, or 64% of export sales) and Canada purchasing most of the remaining export volume (1.8 mg). October sales of undenatured fuel for non-fuel, non-beverage use increased by 9% to 2.1 mg, the highest level shipped since August 2014. South Korea imported an uncharacteristic volume for the second straight month, bringing in 1.8 mg (or 89% of exports). Mexico, Canada, the Philippines and China were other top customers.

In October, for the second time this year, no fuel ethanol entered the United States. Year-to-date ethanol imports are just 33.7 mg—roughly half the volume imported by this point last year. At this rate, the U.S. is on pace to import about 40 mg in 2016.

October exports of U.S. distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS)—the animal feed co-product from dry mill ethanol production—experienced a slight increase over September, up 1% to 1,005,027 metric tons (mt). The current distribution of U.S. DDGS in the global marketplace reflects a distinct change in our customer base, with the top five customers splitting over half of the shipments fairly evenly. Exports to Mexico expanded by 7% to 131,672 mt (13% of the U.S. export market)—still lower than recent volumes but enough to overtake China as the largest U.S. customer. Shipments to China have been plummeting since June as another 25% month-on-month decrease meant exports totaled 124,713 mt (12%) and the lowest volume in nearly two years. Vietnam continued as a strong buyer with 121,961 mt of U.S. DDGS (12%), with the threat of new fumigation requirements not yet reflected in the data. Meanwhile Thailand increased its imports by 10% over September to 95,857 mt (10%)—more than double the volume entering the country at the start of the year. South Korea rounded out the largest customers of American distillers grains in October with 92,804 mt (9%). Other large customers in October were Turkey (63,864 mt), Spain (52,857 mt) and New Zealand (44,159 mt), all of which brought in unusual volumes of U.S. distillers grains. Through October, DDGS exports stood at 9.6 million mt, indicating an annualized total of 11.5 million mt.

u-s-ethanol-exports-for-2016-10

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Export Exchange Results in $460 Million in Grain and Co-Product Sales

WASHINGTON — The Export Exchange conference hosted this fall by the U.S. Grains Council (USGC) and Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) is already paying dividends, according to new surveys of overseas grain buyers who attended — to the tune of nearly a half billion dollars’ worth of grain and ethanol co-product sales.
Buyers and end-users were asked after the conference if they made purchase agreements with sellers and how much volume was purchased. In total, attendees reported sales of approximately 2.6 million metric tons of grains and co-products worth $460 million traded either at the conference or immediately before or after.
The top grain traded during the two-day conference was corn, with 924,500 metric tons collectively exchanged, followed by distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS), with 875,000 metric tons exchanged. This means buyers at the conference struck deals to purchase an amount of DDGS equivalent to roughly 8 percent of last year’s total U.S. DDGS exports.
Export Exchange 2016 offered attendees a unique opportunity to meet and build relationships with domestic suppliers of corn, DDGS, sorghum, barley and other commodities. More than 200 international buyers and end-users of coarse grains and co-products from more than 35 countries were in Detroit for the conference, held Oct. 24 to 26, and for related tours of U.S. farms, ethanol plans and export infrastructure as part of Council trade teams.
“Trade is absolutely critical to U.S. farmers right now, and these sales show that buyers attending Export Exchange 2016 took the buying opportunities very seriously,” said Tom Sleight, president and CEO of the Council. “Putting buyers and sellers together, building and sustaining relationships with our top global grain buyers have been hallmarks of Council activities worldwide. We are thrilled to see how much actual trade was done at the show and in association with it.”
“This conference and these tremendous sales figures show how much of an appetite there is globally for U.S.-produced feed grains and co-products. It’s no surprise that the top two commodities traded during the conference were corn and DDGS, a coproduct of U.S. ethanol production. With a record corn supply anticipated for the 2016/2017 marketing year, exports will continue to be essential as we move forward in a global market,” said RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen.
Other grains traded at Export Exchange included:

  • Corn Gluten—25,200 metric tons;
  • Sorghum—428,000 metric tons; and
  • Barley—5,000 metric tons.
The Export Exchange conference provides an ideal forum for continued relationship building among trading partners. The conference is held every two years and will next be held in 2018. More information about the recent event is online at www.ExportExchange.org.
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September Ethanol Exports Balloon as China Returns to Market

U.S. ethanol exports totaled 99.6 million gallons (mg) in September, up 28%–nearly 22 mg–over August, according to government trade data released today and analyzed by the Renewable Fuels Association. This marks the highest monthly volume exported in almost 5 years (December 2011). Much of the upturn can be attributed to 27.9 mg in shipments to Canada, as trade across the northern border expanded by 33% over August rates. Brazil imported 18.1 mg in September, down 7 mg from August and falling back to second place. China reappeared as a significant buyer after taking the summer off, with imports of 17.8 mg of U.S. product in September. The Philippines (10.4 mg), the United Arab Emirates (9.2 mg) and South Korea (5.4 mg)–countries which tend to make larger purchases on an intermittent basis–all made larger purchases in September. Just six countries purchased 92% of U.S. ethanol exports in September. Year-to-date exports stood at 693.9 mg, implying an annual total of 925.2 mg for calendar year 2016.

September exports of U.S. denatured fuel ethanol more than doubled from the prior month to 44.1 mg. Canada (26.0 mg, or 59%), China (14.9 mg, or 34%) and Peru (3.1 mg, or 7%) were the primary markets–a change from the typically Canadian-dominated trade flow. Export sales of undenatured fuel ethanol in September held firm at high levels, increasing 2% over August levels to 51.5 mg. Brazil backed off from August undenatured imports, buying 18.1 mg (35%) in September. The Philippines export market was reinvigorated with 10.4 mg (20%) of undenatured product, while the 9.2 mg (18%) to the UAE reflected only the second time in two years that U.S. undenatured ethanol entered the country. South Korea, China and Singapore were other larger customers for undenatured fuel ethanol.

September sales of denatured ethanol for non-fuel use dropped back to a more normal volume of 2.1 mg after reaching nearly 6.5 mg in August. Canada was the primary customer with 1.9 mg, down from 3.0 mg the prior month, while the remaining volume was parceled out among several countries. September sales of undenatured fuel for non-fuel, non-beverage use increased 79% to 1.9 mg. South Korea purchased 1.5 mg (79%) in September–more product than it has brought in over the past two years combined–while Mexico returned to a more typical volume of 180,042 gallons (9%).

Following three straight months of sizable ethanol imports, September volumes entering the United States were fairly insignificant at just 5,535 gallons. About 5,000 gallons of undenatured ethanol were sourced from China and the remainder was Canadian denatured ethanol. Year-to-date total imports are 33.7 mg, suggesting annualized imports just shy of 45 mg. Should this volume be realized, the United States would import less than half of what it brought in for calendar year 2015.

U.S. distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS)—the animal feed co-product from dry mill ethanol production—in the global marketplace have been making measurable strides since the beginning of the year; however, September data showed a 15% pull-back from the prior month with 990,971 metric tons (mt) shipped. Once again China was the top market for U.S. exports with 166,650 mt, which is a third less than entered the country in August. China’s share of the total U.S. export market in September fell to just 17%–in sharp contrast to taking in half of all U.S. distillers grains exports in calendar year 2015. In September, South Korea increased its offtake to 166,650 mt (13%) and Vietnam purchased 123,267 mt (12%), while Mexico scaled back from August volumes by 39% to 122,513 mt (12%). Other larger markets include Thailand (87,506 mt), Egypt (56,461 mt), Turkey (46,200 mt) and Canada (41,291 mt). Through September, DDGS exports stood at 8.6 million mt, indicating an annualized total of 11.5 million mt. If realized, this would be the second largest DDGS export volume in history.

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September Ethanol Exports Balloon as China Returns to Market

U.S. ethanol exports totaled 99.6 million gallons (mg) in September, up 28%—nearly 22 mg—over August, according to government trade data released today and analyzed by the Renewable Fuels Association. This marks the highest monthly volume exported in almost 5 years (December 2011). Much of the upturn can be attributed to 27.9 mg in shipments to Canada, as trade across the northern border expanded by 33% over August rates. Brazil imported 18.1 mg in September, down 7 mg from August and falling back to second place. China reappeared as a significant buyer after taking the summer off, with imports of 17.8 mg of U.S. product in September. The Philippines (10.4 mg), the United Arab Emirates (9.2 mg) and South Korea (5.4 mg)—countries which tend to make larger purchases on an intermittent basis—all made larger purchases in September. Just six countries purchased 92% of U.S. ethanol exports in September. Year-to-date exports stood at 693.9 mg, implying an annual total of 925.2 mg for calendar year 2016.

September exports of U.S. denatured fuel ethanol more than doubled from the prior month to 44.1 mg. Canada (26.0 mg, or 59%), China (14.9 mg, or 34%) and Peru (3.1 mg, or 7%) were the primary markets–a change from the typically Canadian-dominated trade flow. Export sales of undenatured fuel ethanol in September held firm at high levels, increasing 2% over August levels to 51.5 mg. Brazil backed off from August undenatured imports, buying 18.1 mg (35%) in September. The Philippines export market was reinvigorated with 10.4 mg (20%) of undenatured product, while the 9.2 mg (18%) to the UAE reflected only the second time in two years that U.S. undenatured ethanol entered the country. South Korea, China and Singapore were other larger customers for undenatured fuel ethanol.

September sales of denatured ethanol for non-fuel use dropped back to a more normal volume of 2.1 mg after reaching nearly 6.5 mg in August. Canada was the primary customer with 1.9 mg, down from 3.0 mg the prior month, while the remaining volume was parceled out among several countries. September sales of undenatured fuel for non-fuel, non-beverage use increased 79% to 1.9 mg. South Korea purchased 1.5 mg (79%) in September—more product than it has brought in over the past two years combined—while Mexico returned to a more typical volume of 180,042 gallons (9%).

Following three straight months of sizable ethanol imports, September volumes entering the United States were fairly insignificant at just 5,535 gallons. About 5,000 gallons of undenatured ethanol were sourced from China and the remainder was Canadian denatured ethanol. Year-to-date total imports are 33.7 mg, suggesting annualized imports just shy of 45 mg. Should this volume be realized, the United States would import less than half of what it brought in for calendar year 2015.

U.S. distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS)—the animal feed co-product from dry mill ethanol production—in the global marketplace have been making measurable strides since the beginning of the year; however, September data showed a 15% pull-back from the prior month with 990,971 metric tons (mt) shipped. Once again China was the top market for U.S. exports with 166,650 mt, which is a third less than entered the country in August. China’s share of the total U.S. export market in September fell to just 17%—in sharp contrast to taking in half of all U.S. distillers grains exports in calendar year 2015. In September, South Korea increased its offtake to 166,650 mt (13%) and Vietnam purchased 123,267 mt (12%), while Mexico scaled back from August volumes by 39% to 122,513 mt (12%). Other larger markets include Thailand (87,506 mt), Egypt (56,461 mt), Turkey (46,200 mt) and Canada (41,291 mt). Through September, DDGS exports stood at 8.6 million mt, indicating an annualized total of 11.5 million mt. If realized, this would be the second largest DDGS export volume in history.

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