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Renewable diesel production surpasses biodiesel

Kansas Digest: TAPS hosts field day; time to get your forage insurance; volunteers aid Extension.

June 5, 2024

3 Min Read
soybean plant
SOYBEAN TURNS INTO RENEWABLE DIESEL: USDA Economic Research Service reports that renewable diesel production in the U.S. has surpassed traditional biodiesel production for the first time.Jennifer M. Latzke

USDA’s Economic Research Service reports that in 2022-23 for the first time, renewable diesel production has surpassed biodiesel production.

Biodiesel, produced from soybean oil, corn oil, yellow grease or tallow, must be blended with traditional diesel. Production of biodiesel peaked at 1.8 gallons in the 2018-19 marketing year for soybean oil. But, it has declined slightly to 1.7 billion gallons in the 2022-23 marketing year.

Production of biofuels chart

Renewable diesel can be made from similar fats to biodiesel, but it does not need to be blended with traditional diesel, making it a “drop-in” biofuel. Production has grown, according to USDA Economic Research Service, from 40 million gallons in 2010-11, to 2.3 billion gallons in this most recent year.

Biodiesel and renewable diesel production combined reached an all-time high in the last year, using a share of about 46% of U.S. soybean oil production. Read more at USDA ERS - U.S. Bioenergy Statistics.

TAPS Technology
Field Day to be June 20

The Kansas State University Testing Ag Performance Solutions program will host its TAPS Technology Field Day at 10 a.m. June 20, at the Northwest Research-Extension Center, Colby, Kan. The morning will start with a technology program and a tour of the TAPS plots, followed by a noon meal and then an afternoon golf scramble at Meadow Lake Golf Course. Attendees can engage with technology partners view demonstrations, view the TAPS Sprinkler Irrigated Corn competition plots planted in May, connect with K-State Research and Extension specialists and build their networks. RSVP at k-state.edu/taps or contact Renee Tuttle at [email protected].

Annual forage insurance
deadline approaches: July 15

Producers who grow annual crops for feed may want to consider enrolling in annual forage insurance to manage their drought risk for the 2025 crop year, according to Jenny Ifft, K-State agricultural policy Extension specialist. AFI pays out based on estimated precipitation in a 14-by-16-mile area.

Annual crops that are fed to livestock — whether fed as grain, silage, grazed, etc. — are eligible. An AFI policy purchased by July 15 would cover annual forage crops planted Aug. 1 to July 31, 2025. For more information, visit Managing drought risk with annual forage insurance – beef tips.

Volunteers boost reach
of K-State Extension programs

K-State Research and Extension reported that in 2023, volunteers gave 309,343 hours of their time to programs across the state. Gregg Hadley, K-State’s director of Extension and assistant vice president, says that’s an equivalent value of more than $8.8 million, or about 136 full-time equivalent employees, according to KSRE News Service.

Volunteers assist with 4-H programming, the state’s Master Gardener program, natural resources education, and food and nutrition programs, among many others.

“Without volunteers, we could not educate and assist as many Kansans as we do,” Hadley said, noting that the number of total educational contacts made by Extension professionals and volunteers surpassed 8 million people in 2023. To learn more, contact a local Extension office; see a list of statewide offices.

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