- Ethanol: A clean-burning, high-octane renewable fuel that is blended with gasoline.
- Distillers Grains: Dried and modified (wet) co-products from the fermenting of sugars (starch) in the corn during the distillation process. They consist of protein, fats, fiber and other solids sold as valuable livestock feed.
Fuel- and Feed-Grade Corn Oil: This inedible corn oil is extracted during the evaporation process of making ethanol. It is used to make renewable diesel fuel and livestock feed.
The Science of Ethanol
What is Ethanol?
Ethanol is a clear liquid that is blended with gasoline, improving combustion that releases the energy to power the car’s engine.
Ethanol lowers life cycle greenhouse gas emissions up to 28% compared to non-blended gasoline.
Is Ethanol Made From Corn I Can Eat?
Ethanol is made from field corn, which typically is used for livestock feed and industrial use. The kind of corn we eat is called sweet corn. Only one percent of corn grown in the U.S. is sweet corn for human consumption. The remainder is field corn used for livestock feed and fuels.
How Much Corn is Used to Produce Ethanol?
At Valero, each year we use approximately 588 million bushels of corn, to supply our ethanol plants.
How Many Products Do You Get From Corn?
Processing corn results in ethanol, distillers grains and fuel- and feed-grade corn oil.
What are Distillers Grains?
Distillers grains are the co-product from the fermenting process, consisting of protein, fat, fiber and other solids. These can be dried or modified (wet), which require different storage.
Because of its concentration of nutrients, distillers grains are a valuable livestock feed for cattle, swine and poultry.