E-85 Price Plunges
"That's how you get the ball rolling, is to make it available," said MFA President Jerry Taylor. "You can't have people buying vehicles if it isn't available yet."
MFA is joining companies like Ford Motor Co. in hyping the hometown fuel. But sales people at Machens Ford in Columbia said the hype is not translating into higher demand for flex-fuel vehicles which can run on ethanol-85 or regular unleaded gas.
"Not everyone's sold on the flex-fuel program yet and there's a lot of things that have to be looked at," said Ken Redders of Machens Ford.
MFA Oil executives predict the number of flex-fuel vehicles will double in the next few years, although a severe drought would reduce the corn crop that's needed to make ethanol.
"We hope that never happens, of course there's always a chance," said farmer Jerry Kruse.
That's why ethanol experts say the fuel eventually will be made out of things like grass. Several local auto repair shops said there's no way to convert non-flexible fuel cars to run on E-85.