A recent Associated Press story discussed how certain members of the meat industry want to see changes made to our nation’s Renewable Fuel Standard, for the sole purpose of giving them access to cheaper corn.

That’s what it’s really all about for them.

Corn growers support ethanol because it is good for our farmers, to be sure, and for other reasons as well. It helps rural economies. It’s good for energy independence. And it’s better for the environment than gasoline. What’s not to like?

We supported the growth of the ethanol industry for reasons that are as valid today as they have ever been. Corn farmers have the ability to grow more corn per acre and this ability will continue for the foreseeable future, with some predicting 300 bushels per acre, more than double the 2011 crop. Finding other major uses for corn provides security and stability for the American farmer.

The fact is, this stability has carried over into other areas. Economic conditions have improved for beef and dairy farmers since the implementation of the expanded Renewable Fuel Standard in 2007, according to a study released this past summer by Texas A&M University and Doane Advisory Services.

The study determined that net cash farm incomes for representative beef-cow and dairy operations had increased since provisions of the biofuels mandate went into effect. Conclusion: Increased ethanol production has not negatively impacted the profitability of key livestock markets.