Kentucky Policymakers Hear the Message: Corn is Food, Not Fuel

August 13, 2015

You know the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is broken—you’ve seen the real talk about its negative effects on food prices, engines and the environment, and how it’s hurting folks like you every day. But we bet you haven’t seen them like this.

Recently, we attended Kentucky’s 2015 Fancy Farm Picnic, an annual community event where residents from all over the state gather to enjoy quality barbeque, socialize with fellow locals, and mingle with political speakers, the event’s main attraction. Drawing crowds of thousands every year, Fancy Farm is the ultimate platform for citizens to make their voices heard, and we knew we wanted to be a part of it.

This was the perfect opportunity to help Kentuckians initiate conversations about the RFS with their lawmakers by arming them with the facts. Using our newest representatives, the Kentucky Corn Cobs, we wanted all attendees, especially the politicians slated to speak, to know one thing: Corn is food, not fuel.

Yet because of the ethanol mandates created by the RFS, 40 percent of the U.S. corn harvest is now used to feed our gas tanks. As a result, less corn is available for the feed livestock poultry and dairy farmers use to produce our food. How does that affect consumers like you? It means your wallet takes a big hit every time you visit the grocery store or go out to eat, as food prices increase with the rise in ethanol production. In fact, the Congressional Research Service estimates that the RFS will increase Americans’ food costs by $3 billion annually by 2022.

Policymakers need to know the far-reaching consequences this mandate has on both a local and global scale. Thanks to the kernels of knowledge shared by our costumed cobs, a few more do.

If you missed out on the anti-mandate fun, you can still give legislators a piece of your mind! Tell your representatives in Congress that corn is food, not fuel by sending them a message here.