Ethanol and high food prices

Ethanol and high food prices

February 28th, 2011 in Opinion Free Press

A recent headline in the Times Free Press read, "Low corn supply, ethanol usage to boost food bills."

The story told how the diversion of so much corn to ethanol production is diminishing U.S. corn supplies, meaning it will be more expensive to make corn-based foods. Also increasing will be the cost of meat from animals that are fed corn.

Why is corn being diverted to ethanol? Is ethanol especially efficient? Hardly. It reduces gas mileage in cars and damages small engines, such as those on lawnmowers. But in a giveaway to the farm lobby, Congress is requiring that higher and higher percentages of ethanol be used in our gasoline supply. And our taxes subsidize each gallon of ethanol.

So we get not only lower mileage, damaged engines and higher food prices, but bigger deficits.

Does that make any sense?