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August 29, 2014

High price of corn idles Little Falls ethanol plant

The Central Minnesota Ethanol Co-Op has suspended operations until they can buy corn or sell ethanol at a better price, the St. Cloud Times reports. The Little Falls plant is using the downtime to complete maintenance and other projects, but most of the 30 employees are out of work.

Corn prices have spiked this summer because much of the country is dealing with severe drought.

The Rochester Post Bulletin reports most of Minnesota continues to be spared from the Midwest drought. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s weekly crop progress report shows the state’s corn and soybean crops are holding relatively steady.

Livestock farmers and ranchers are demanding that the Environmental Protection Agency waive production requirements for corn-based ethanol because the drought has caused their feed costs rise.