MDA: Ethanol generates $5 billion for economy - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

MDA: Ethanol generates $5 billion for economy

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -- The Minnesota Department of Agriculture says the ethanol industry generated $5 billion for the state's economy last year.

The department's report says ethanol supported more than 12,600 jobs and added $912 million to the value of the state's corn crop in 2011. Ethanol producers pushed to make as much of the gasoline additive as possible last year because Congress was ending a federal production tax credit. That flooded the market and lowered the demand for ethanol early this year.

The St. Paul Pioneer Press says Minnesota farmers harvested more than 1.2 billion bushels of corn last year. About 37 percent of the harvest was used to produce ethanol and its byproduct.

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