By the year 2012, Bill Hudson of ProExporter Network expects ethanol production to exceed 8 billion gallons--more than the 7.5-billion-gallon renewable fuels standard passed by Congress last week.
"Weâ€™re looking at the RFS as a floor rather than ceiling because investor sentiment is to go ahead with this," says Hudson. "Investors like ethanol. Theyâ€™re earning good return on investment right now.
"There are many opportunities for investing money in the country. Itâ€™s hard to find an opportunity with this much promise," Hudson adds.
Currently, U.S. ethanol production is 4.5 billion gallons, well ahead of the 4 billion gallons required by Congress for 2006. By 2012, Hudson projects ethanol production to reach at least 8.062 billion gallons. By 2015, he expects nearly 9 billion gallons of ethanol to be produced.
Hudson also says rising gas prices indicate the need for renewable fuels."With the generally accepted view that fossil fuels are limited, the job of petroleum price will be to signal the need for alternative fuels," he says.
Max Starbuck, director of livestock and economic analysis for the National Corn Growers Association, says the report has received a lot of attention among corn growers. "Iâ€™ve had more e-mails on this than you can imagine," Starbuck says. "Everyoneâ€™s excited."