US Ethanol Exports Down 12% in August

NEW YORK (DTN) -- U.S. ethanol exports totaled 103.1 million gallons in August, down 12% from July shipments, according to government data released Thursday morning and analyzed by the Renewable Fuels Association.

Canada and Brazil were again the top destinations for U.S. exports, combining to receive more than half of total exports in August.

Year-to-date, U.S. ethanol exports to all destinations stood at 906.5 mg, indicating an annualized export total of 1.36 billion gallons.

Top-importer Canada received 38.7 mg of ethanol while Brazil recorded 27.0 mg in August, down 20% from July.

Through the first eight months of 2017, Brazil was the top market for U.S. ethanol exports, accounting for a third -- 337.0 mg or 37% -- of all export demand. Canada has been the No. 2 market year-to-date, receiving 218 mg or 24% of total exports, while India is quickly catching up to the leaders by receiving 103.6 mg or 11%.

August exports of undenatured fuel ethanol fell 21% to 46.5 mg. Brazil imported 26.5 mg from the United States, down 22% from July. The Philippines doubled its July import volume with 5.2 mg, and the United Kingdom received 4.2 mg, and Switzerland 2.8 mg. Jamaica jumped back into the market, importing 2.2 mg of U.S. ethanol.

Canada decreased purchases of American denatured fuel ethanol by 23%, but still maintained a solid hold on its top importer status with 29.2 mg -- equivalent to 56% of total denatured exports.

Notably, Oman entered the marketplace for the first time since February 2016 with a purchase of 11.0 mg in August. India (9.0 mg), Peru (2.4 mg), and Brazil (0.5 mg) were the destinations for the remaining bulk of denatured fuel ethanol shipments.

Exports of denatured and undenatured ethanol for non-fuel, non-beverage purposes rebounded from the prior month's dip, with volumes more than doubling to 4.3 mg. Nigeria received 2.3 mg and Canada 1.1 mg, which was nearly 80% of the shipments. South Korea received 0.5 mg and Mexico 0.3 mg.

For the fourth straight month this year, the United States recorded meaningful fuel ethanol import volumes. The U.S. brought in 17.9 mg of fuel ethanol in August -- the largest monthly volume from Brazil in 21 months. Year-to-date imports total 42.2 mg and indicate an annualized volume of 63.3 mg imported.