AMI on consequences of food-based biofuels program

by Editor
Tuesday, February 12, 2008

AMI President and CEO J. Patrick Boyle submitted a testimony to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee regarding the biofuels program.

He expressed concern about the short-term and long-term economic consequences of burning more feed and food as fuel on the meat and poultry industry and shared a number of policy recommendations.

Boyle said that the goal of energy security is commendable and should be considered in relative context to risk posed to domestic and international food security. By utilising a key food ingredient as the dominant input for biofuels, the program has coupled food prices to fuel prices, Boyle’s testimony states.

Boyle noted that, in 2007, livestock and poultry producers saw their feed prices rise by more than 65% and are anticipating an equally difficult environment for 2008. Food-based biofuels production has had an influence on food prices and substantial influence on the prices farmers pay for feed.

It is for these reasons that AMI is asking Congress and the Administration through tax, other legislative and regulatory vehicles to consider policies that account for impacts on animal agriculture and food, and ultimately places the U.S. in a more competitive position in terms of energy security, diversity, and availability as well as food security, Boyle concluded.