A joint effort launched three years ago by the leading feed grain export promotion group and ethanol organizations to boost exports of U.S. ethanol is paying off as sales increase to destinations all over the world.

Those added ethanol exports are increasing the overall demand for U.S. corn and adding support to the struggling corn market, industry leaders said last week. That’s especially important in Iowa because the state is easily the country’s leading producer of ethanol, they said.

"Ethanol exports are be­­coming very meaningful for Iowa, especially with the size of the crops we are producing," said Monte Shaw, executive director of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association.

Chad Hart, Iowa State Uni­versity Extension grains market economist, agrees that ethanol exports are making a positive difference during this period of low crop prices.

"Exports are not a big ...