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July Sees Flat Ethanol Exports, Surge in Imports; DDG Exports Second-Highest Ever

September 4, 2013


July ethanol exports were up just 3% over June shipments, but remained well below the three-year monthly average. Exports totaled 35.1 million gallons (mg) in July, with the lion's share again being sent to Canada, according to government data released today. Shipments to the European Union continued to be virtually non-existent in the wake of the EU implementing its tariff on U.S.-origin ethanol. Meanwhile, the U.S. imported 56.8 mg of ethanol in July, meaning the U.S. was a net importer for the second straight month. Exports of denatured fuel ethanol totaled 31.6 mg in July, up 9% from June and the highest in four months. Canada was the leading destination, receiving 29.1 mg (92% of the total), while Peru was second with 1.7 mg. Albania took in its first-ever shipment of U.S. ethanol, totaling 839,485 gallons. Exports of undenatured ethanol for fuel use tumbled to 39% to 2.5 mg in July, marking the lowest level since January 2010. Mexico was the top destination at 2.0 mg, followed by the United Kingdom at just 394,796 gallons. Year-to-date ethanol exports stood at 315.7 mg through July, implying an annualized total of 541.2 mg for the calendar year. Imports jumped to their highest level of the year, as Brazil shipped 56.2 mg of ethanol to the U.S. in July. An additional 631,718 gallons of denatured fuel ethanol came by way of Jamaica. Year-to-date imports through July totaled 251.2 mg, implying an annual total of 430.6 mg—well below the EPA estimate of 666 mg needed to meet the RFS advanced biofuel standard. Exports of distillers dried grains (DDG)—the animal feed co-product manufactured by dry mill ethanol plants—surged to its highest level of the year and second-highest monthly total on record. At 911,911 metric tons (mt), July DDG shipments trailed only the August 2010 export total of 1.00 million mt (mmt). China was the leading destination, receiving 468,601 mt, followed by Mexico (91,852 mt), Canada (55,559 mt), Japan (35,275 mt), and Vietnam (34,856 mt). Year-to-date exports tallied at 4.87 mmt through July, indicating an annualized total of 8.35 mmt.