While the roll-out of E15 has been a bit slow out of the gate, the ethanol blend is now being legally sold in four states: Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, and South Dakota. “While progress has been slow, it is progress,” said Robert White, director of market development for the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) during an interview with Cindy Zimmerman on site at the National Association of Farm Broadcasting (NAFB) Trade Talk.
White noted that the healthy misinformation campaign that went along with the long wait from EPA on the approval, did its work and it was very successful. “So we’re having to go back and re-educate marketers, curb some of the concerns that are out there from liability concerns to I already have a product that those vehicles can use.”
One of the areas of education RFA is doing is showcasing the business case for E15. White said fortunately a few marketers have taken the first step and are setting an example, one that is in fact proving to be successful.
“Most retailers are seeing their sales in the 20 percent range. With premiums sales hovering in the single digits and E85 between 10-15 percent, this is a great feat, and one I personally, thought would take months,” said White. “With over 65 percent of the cars on the road able to use E15, it’s a large demographic. Almost 85 percent of sales could be E15, so the sales could add up very quickly.”
White added that what consumers are finding is that E15 is a higher octane, lower price product that has the same performance benefits. He added that today, most people are seeing no difference in fuel economy especially compared to E10.
Going into 2013, RFA is working state by state to ensure E15 is approved for sale and sold in a safe manner.
Listen to Cindy’s interview with Robert here: The Business Case for E15