U.S. ETHANOL FUELS OUR WORLD

And these days, keeping our world safe with trade means that everyone has a safe supply of fuel as well!  Did you realize how much U.S. ethanol is fueling the vehicles all over the world?

We are already shipping ethanol to Brazil, China, Japan, and to our best friends, Canada and Mexico.  But we’re growing in other markets like the EU, and many countries in Central and South America.

American farmers and ethanol producers are seeing major growth in this area!  And we’re proud to supply a cleaner burning, renewable fuel!

WHEN TRADE WORKS, THE WORLD WINS

I learned something this week about the history of trade that I never knew before.

After World War II, our world got together and tried to figure out how to prevent more world wars.  Making sure that everyone had access to food and that all the countries were relying on each other was a part of that solution.

Since WWII, the United States has negotiated trade agreements with 20 countries.  Other countries have many, many more trade agreements.  And guess what?  It’s working!

Surely trade isn’t the only reason we haven’t had global wars, but it isn’t hurting.

You know what they say: if you don’t remember history, you are doomed to repeat it!

TELL ME MORE ABOUT FARMERS AND RECYCLING

On Tuesday, we talked about how the leftovers from ethanol production are left to livestock.  But if you don’t understand ethanol production, that might sound sort of … iffy.

Read how this mom began to understand how farmers are amazing recyclers!

WHAT EXACTLY IS THAT BYPRODUCT?

by ANITA MANN Naperville, IL

cattle, eating, byproductI don’t know about you, but I have to admit that when I heard that farmers feed their cattle byproducts I really didn’t understand what that meant. All I knew was that it didn’t sound good to me, especially if that byproduct came from an ethanol plant!

When I hear the word ethanol, I think of gasoline so I was really confused on what the byproduct was.  However, while on a tour at the Adams Farm in Sandwich, IL, I was pleasantly surprised to learn what these byproducts actually are and how they were used to feed cattle. 

The byproduct from ethanol distilleries is known as distillers grains (often referred to as DDGS). When the corn is used to make ethanol they only use the starch portion of the grain, so the byproduct is the corn germ, oil, and the outer seed shell.

The fermentation of the grain in the ethanol production process makes the byproduct a high-protein, high-fat and high-fiber product that cattle like. The farmer uses this much like we put sugar on cereal. 

Another byproduct used in feed is from a local Del Monte vegetable plant and a seed corn plant. After the sweet corn is harvested and the kennels are removed, both the cob and the husk are left over. This sweet corn byproduct is mixed with the leftover husks from a seed corn plant and then it ferments in a bunker silo. This fermented mixture is used as part of the cattle’s feed ration.

A third type of byproduct used in cattle feeding comes from a sugar refinery in the form of molasses, which is mixed with a vitamin/mineral supplement that the cattle receive. 

All of these byproducts would normally just go to waste, but the cow’s unique digestive system allows a farmer to utilize it for feed in addition to the grass that the cattle graze on in the pasture. With the human population increasing and the amount of land available for grazing decreasing, I think this is a clever way of utilizing the resources that are available.

Read this article as it was originally posted here.

FARMERS LOVE RECYCLING!

recycle, sustainability, DDGS

It’s true.  When farmers sell their corn to a local ethanol plant, the leftovers from making ethanol are perfect livestock feed.  In fact, 1/3 of the corn used for ethanol comes back to the farm for livestock.

Then, the manure produced from eating those leftovers is used to fertilize the soil to grow more corn the next year.

It’s an amazing recycling system that farmers have been using for years!

SERVE CREAMY CONFETTI CORN FOR THANKSGIVING

Who can’t wait for Thanksgiving and all the food, family and friends you’ll get to enjoy?  Me either!  I’m dreaming of an amazing Thanksgiving feast – and this recipe from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe sounds like the perfect side dish.  I really love the idea of totally amping up the creamed corn!

Today’s Fact:  Corn on the cob was unlikely to have been on the menu for the very first Thanksgiving with the Pilgrims and Native Americans, since Indian corn was primarily kept dried by that time of year and used for grinding up into meal.

Today’s Recipe: CREAMY CONFETTI CORN

Photo by Mel’s Kitchen Cafe

What You’ll Need:

  • 8 slices bacon, chopped
  • 2 12-ounce packages frozen corn kernels, white or yellow
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion, white, yellow or red
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, light or regular, cubed
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 green onions, green parts finely chopped (white parts discarded)

What You Do:

In a large nonstick skillet, cook the chopped bacon until golden and crisp. Scoop the bacon to a paper-towel lined plate and discard all the bacon grease except for a thin coating on the pan, maybe a teaspoon or so.

Add the corn, onion, and red pepper, and cook over medium heat, stirring every so often, until the vegetables are tender and the corn is heated through, 6-8 minutes. Add the cream cheese and milk, stirring until the cream cheese melts and the mixture is evenly combined.

Stir in the sugar, salt and pepper. Add more salt to taste if needed. Stir in the green onions.

Serve warm topped with the reserved bacon.

This dish can be made up to 2 days ahead of time. Scoop the creamy corn mixture into an oven-safe dish, sprinkle with the bacon and cover with a lid or plastic wrap. Store in the refrigerator. When ready to eat, heat the corn dish in a 325 degree oven for 15-20 minutes until heated through.

SERVE SOUTHWEST CORNBREAD STUFFING FOR THANKSGIVING!

Who can’t wait for Thanksgiving and all the food, family and friends you’ll get to enjoy?  Me either!  I’m dreaming of an amazing Thanksgiving feast – and this recipe from A Spicy Perspective will most certainly be a part of our celebration!

Today’s Fact:  Cornbread is older than our country! Native Americans were using ground maize (corn) as a dietary staple for thousands of years before European explorers arrived on the continent.

Today’s Recipe: SOUTHWEST CORNBREAD STUFFING

cornbread stuffing
photo by A Spicy Perspective

What You’ll Need:

  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped (about 2/3 cup)
  • 1/2 yellow bell pepper, seeded and chopped (about 2/3 cup)
  • 1 packet Old El Paso “Roasted Tomato” Mexican Cooking Sauce
  • 4.5 ounce can chopped green chilis
  • 3.8 ounce can sliced black olives
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro + extra for garnish
  • 14 ounce bag dried cornbread stuffing
  • 2 cups shredded “mexican blend” cheese
  • 1 1/4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • Salt and pepper

What You Do:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place a large deep skillet over medium heat. Add the butter, onion, garlic, celery and chopped bell peppers. Saute and stir for 3-5 minutes, until soft. Then turn off the heat and salt and pepper to taste.

Pour the Old El Paso Mexican Cooking Sauce into the skillet, followed by the green chiles, olives, cilantro, and dried stuffing. Stir to combine. Then toss in the shredded cheese, reserving a handful for the top.

Spray a 9 X 13 inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Then spoon the cornbread stuffing into the dish. Drizzle the stock over the top of the stuffing, covering the entire dish. Sprinkle the top with the remaining cheese and a little more cilantro.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until the top is golden and the cheese has melted. Serve warm.