The National Corn Growers Association on Tuesday invested another $500,000 into the Prime the Pump program, which seeks to expand fueling infrastructure capable of delivering higher blends of ethanol fuel to American consumers.
This increases the NCGA commitment to $2 million in the last year, the group said.
Prime the Pump will use the funds pledged by corn farmers as matching funds to secure grants under the recently announced program by the USDA. USDA's Biofuel Infrastructure Partnership is making $100 million in grants available.
"The nation's corn farmers have shown their commitment to domestically produced, clean burning ethanol repeatedly over the last 30 years and, when needed, have put their money where their mouth is," said Chip Bowling, president of NCGA.
"Consumers should have fuel options that include cleaner burning ethanol and this investment will allow us to continue to move forward toward that important goal."
In addition to NCGA's increased funding commitment, several state affiliates are strongly supporting proposed Prime the Pump projects within their respective states.
Prime the Pump is aimed at retailers with high volumes and multiple locations. Retailers have to commit to a five-year marketing program, E15 must be offered at all dispensers under the canopy, signage on the street must include E15 and retailers must agree to actively promote the fuel.
"Family corn farmers are faced with the lowest corn prices in more than a decade and increased ethanol utilization is an efficient way to turn that around and help the U.S. economy and environment at the same time," Bowling said.