Federal Ethanol Policies and Chain Restaurant Food Costs

December 19, 2012

The National Council of Chain Restaurants (NCCR) commissioned, at the request of membership, a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLC (PwC) which examines the effects of the use of corn-based ethanol required by the federal Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) on the chain restaurant industry and its small business franchisees.

The results of the PwC study are now available in a report entitled “Federal Ethanol Policies and Chain Restaurant Food Costs.”

PwC concluded that the RFS mandate, which requires an ever-increasing volume of ethanol fuel from corn to be blended into gasoline each year, significantly increases the food input costs of chain restaurant operators.

PwC estimated that by 2015, when the RFS is fully phased-in, the RFS mandate will increase total costs for chain restaurants owners by up to $3.2 billion per year for every year the RFS remains in effect.

For the full study, click here