The week of March 9, 2020, Growth Energy consultant Kristy Moore joined the U.S. Grains Council Latin America Team on a trade mission to Ecuador and Peru in the light of detailed inquiries on how to improve their respective country’s ethanol blending programs. Below is a recap from Kristy on her trip:

“In Ecuador, the current blend rate in Ecuador is 5 percent, and the grade is called Ecopais, which loosely translated means “eco country” and refers to their desire to improve the environmental benefits of motor fuel. We saw throughout our meetings that there is great interest in increasing the blend rate to take advantage of a lower cost fuel, with the increase in octane that ethanol can deliver at higher blends.

“The team met with PetroEcuador on the technical details of receiving, storing, handling and blending of ethanol needed to move the country to 10 percent ethanol blends. The afternoon technical session included topics such as ethanol transport, and handling details with specific attention to how PetroEcuador can make their system efficient. Our presentation to standing room only room of 50+ Ecuadorians lasted over an hour, with another hour of a question and answer session. There is interest in building the program to 15 percent ethanol blends in the near future, as PetroEcuador is making significant capital investments to increase their handling capacity of ethanol, which is imported via water, and looking for companies interested in investing in future business in Ecuador.

“The latter half of the week was spent in Lima, Peru, whose current blend rate is 7.8 percent. While there, we met with various stakeholders, and government and private industry, delivering the technical details of how ethanol benefits the gasoline market moving up to 10 percent. The team and I also met with PetroPeru, the national standards body INACAL and other oil refiners doing business in the country. There are national specifications that need to be adjusted in both countries to move to the global specification for ethanol.

“After visiting both countries, I left feeling encouraged by the work we completed, the partnerships we forged, and the future of increasing ethanol blended fuels in South America.”

We thank Kristy for her continued work on behalf of Growth Energy and the ethanol industry, and for traveling to South America for these critical meetings.

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