Johnson’s Butcher Block Act and Year-Round E15 Passes the House
Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson’s (R-S.D.) Butcher Block Act and year-round E15 provisions passed the U.S. House.
The Butcher Block Act establishes a loan program at United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development for new and expanding meat processors and finances producer investment to drive competition within the meat packing industry. Additionally, it would allocate grants to entities to increase hiring and processing capacity. In July 2021, USDA administratively implemented the Butcher Block Act, and in May 2022, Johnson’s Butcher Block Act passed out of House Ag Committee unanimously.
Also included in the package was a provision implementing the year-round sale of E15. Current biofuels regulations only allow for E10, a 10 percent ethanol fuel blend, to be sold in the summer months. Authorizing year-round sales of E15, a 15 percent ethanol fuel blend, will allow higher ethanol content blend to be sold at the pump throughout the year.
“Consumers have been facing rising prices in the grocery store and at the pump for too long – this bill provides solutions to some of the problems America is facing,” said Johnson. “Getting the Butcher Block Act passed out of the House is the first step to increasing shackle space for ranchers to sell their products.
“I’ve been fighting for year-round E15 since day one. E15 will unleash millions of gallons of fuel to the market and ease the pain at the pump that consumers are facing daily. Fair prices for producers and consumers will soften the burden of inflation.”
Johnson introduced the Butcher Block Act in June 2021 to expand processing capacity. Following the introduction of his legislation, in July 2021, USDA announced its intent to provide $500 million in grants to expand meat and poultry processing capacity.
As co-chair of the Biofuels Caucus, Johnson has consistently supported the year-round authorization of E15. In 2019, Johnson praised the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rule that would allow for the year-round sale of E15. Johnson led the Adopt GREET Act and supported the Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Investment and Market Expansion Act introduced in 2021 to increase access to biofuels and fully recognize its environmental benefits. Joined by 28 of his colleagues on the Biofuels Caucus, Johnson sent a letter to pressure President Biden in April 2022 to prioritize homegrown biofuels instead of Russian energy sources.
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