The Environmental Protection Agency Monday announced it has approved grain sorghum as an eligible feedstock under the Renewable Fuels Standard.
"This is a significant step forward for the sorghum industry," said Bill Kubecka, Sorghum Checkoff chairman and a producer from Palacios, Texas. "This pathway for grain sorghum will make sorghum a more profitable biofuel feedstock for the renewables industry, thus increasing the value and demand for sorghum."
The Sorghum Checkoff says the EPA's ruling further affirms its belief that grain sorghum is a feedstock perfectly suited for starch-based ethanol production.
"We believe this new opportunity to produce advanced biofuel will increase demand for the crop and lead to greater profitability for producers across the nation," said Sorghum Checkoff Renewables Director, John Duff. "Furthermore, it gives us great pride that these producers will play a key role in supplying homegrown advanced biofuel, and we look forward to supporting them in these efforts going forward."
According to EPA, ethanol produced from grain sorghum emits 32% less greenhouse gas than the baseline petroleum it replaces and uses one-third less water than some other biofuel feedstocks. Sorghum also produces the same amount of ethanol per bushel and has 34% protein content.
Editor PJ Griekspoor has more about sorghum's use as a biofuel feedstock in the November 2012 issue of Kansas Farmer, page 24.