Figures calculated by the Renewable Fuels Association in the US, suggest that ethanol demand is continuing to exceed production levels.
Its statistics for August show that demand was 734,000 barrels per day (b/d) during the month – up 11 per cent from 661,000 b/d during the same month in the previous year.
Meanwhile, production during the month was 727,500 b/d according to the US Energy Information Administration – that's an increase of 80,000 b/d compared to August 2008. The Energy Information Administration also reports that fuel ethanol imports reached 38.7million gallons in August.
Critics will point out however, that ethanol blend is mandatory and not necessarily a reflection of consumer demand. Blenders may demand more ethanol, but that is likely to be more of a reflection on its cost and the fact that they receive 45cents for every gallon they blend.
According to the RFA, the US has 630million gallons of fuel ethanol stocks – that's around 20.4 days of reserve.