The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) says based on date from the Energy Information Administration, U.S. ethanol exports in January of 76.3 million gallons (mg) is a new record for the first month of the year -- which is typically a slow month.
RFA says January 2012 exports were 33% above January 2011 totals and nearly six times higher than January 2010. Of the total, 51.8 mg (68%) was denatured, while 24.5 mg (32%) was undenatured.
Geoff Cooper, RFA's Vice President of Research and Analysis says Brazil was again the top destination for U.S. exports, receiving a total of 26.4 mg. "Exports to Brazil fell from previous months, due largely to that nation’s recent decision to reduce the mandatory ethanol blend level from 25% to 20%. The Brazilian state of Sao Paulo also recently re-instituted a sales tax on imported ethanol at the point of customs entry, while at the same time deferring payment of the tax for domestic-origin product. Still, exports to Brazil represented approximately one-third of total January shipments, which is consistent with the share of total exports that went to Brazil in 2011," he notes.
Cooper says Canada imported 23.4 mg in January, a total consistent with previous months (monthly exports to Canada averaged 24.8 mg in 2011). The Netherlands was the third-leading importer of U.S. ethanol in January, taking in 4.9 mg. Oman (4.5 mg) and Mexico (4.5 mg) rounded out the top five.
RFA says exports of distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS) totaled 606,643 metric tons (MT), a 7% increase over December shipments and the highest since last September. Mexico was again the top market, importing 160,285 MT, followed by China (104,427 MT), Vietnam (58,191 MT), Canada (54,634 MT), and S. Korea (40,136 MT).