Big Corn Going on Offense

Romina Boccia / Nicolas Loris /

Ethanol subsidies that are set to expire at the end of this year continue to lose support among the public and in Congress. King Corn, understandably not too happy about this change in public attitude, has launched an extensive lobbying campaign targeting Capitol Hill and beyond.

The Corn Farmers Coalition has launched a visible ad campaign in Washington, in addition to revamping its lobbying efforts on Capitol Hill. Featuring the faces of happy corn-growing families carrying messages of the industry’s progress on billboards all throughout the D.C. metro system, the ads silently neglect mentioning that the share of farmers owning ethanol plants has dwindled from 40 percent in the early 2000s to merely 16 percent today, while corn production for ethanol has increased to 35 percent. Understandably, featuring the logos of its biggest corporate backers benefiting from U.S. ethanol fuel blend support wouldn’t sell as well.

It is policies like ethanol subsidies that prevent America from reaching its full economic potential by diverting taxpayer money to selecting economic winners among favored industries. (more…)