Ethanol Blog

Report Examines Economic Contributions of Grains, DDGS Exports

Cheryl Anderson
By  Cheryl Anderson , DTN Staff Reporter

The U.S. reaps great economic benefits from exports of grains and co-products, according to a recent report produced for the U.S. Grains Council in conjunction with the National Corn Growers Association (…).

This report was produced for the U.S. Grains Council (USGC) in coordination with National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) and examined the economic contributions provided by exports of barley, sorghum, corn, ethanol, dried distillers grains with solubles, corn gluten feed, and the corn equivalent of meat on the U.S. economy.

The report -- How Much Do Exports Matter? Evaluating the Economic Contributions of U.S. Grain Exports on State and Congressional District Economies -- emphasized the extra value grain exports provide to the economy.

"The results from this study indicate a total of $80 billion in economic output was generated from the $19.4 billion in grain exports that occurred during 2014. The GDP generated by these exports reached $32.9 billion and 371,536 full-time equivalent are supported by grain exports.

"For every one job directly supported by grain exports, and additional 6.8 jobs are supported throughout the U.S. economy. For every $1 of grain exports, the economic "ripple effects" add $3.23 to the economy, the report concluded.

According to statistics by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. exports of DDGS alone have grown tremendously in the past 10 years, from 1.3 million metric tons at a value of about $161 million in 2006, to about 13 mmt at a value of nearly $3 billion in 2015.

The report added that the benefits of growing grain exports extend beyond the agricultural industry, benefiting real estate, oil, natural gas, banking and financial industries, as well as restaurants, hospitals, employment services and wholesale trade industries.

The report concluded, "Realization of the importance of export markets to state and regional economies is the first step to fair and consistent access to international export markets for U.S. grain products. In turn, the economic impacts of grain exports will extend beyond the farmlands and benefit nearly all sectors of state and regional economies."

Cheryl Anderson can be reached at



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