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E15 & E85 Grants, Tips from Top Fuel Marketers Featured at ACE Retailer Workshop

As the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) soon plans to make another $100 million in biofuel infrastructure grants available to retailers under its Higher Blends and Infrastructure Incentives Program (HBIIP), the American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) invites fuel retailers in Nebraska, Iowa, and surrounding states to learn how to get their share of available funds for new E15 and E85 fueling equipment, and hear how other marketers have increased customer counts and profits selling higher ethanol blends. An E15 and Flex Fuel Retailer Workshop featuring the manager of the USDA HBIIP grant program, two of the nation’s most successful E15 and E85 marketers, and others ready to help retailers obtain grants covering 50 percent or more of the cost of new dispensers and other equipment, will take place on Wednesday, August 10, from 3–5 p.m. at the Marriott Downtown-Capitol District in Omaha, Nebraska, to kick-off The ACE annual conference. The workshop is free to attend. Marketers can sign up by clicking here.

“Retailers and anyone who works with them will learn how fuel marketers view higher ethanol blend opportunities in the current fuels marketplace, what it really costs to add those blends, how partnering with USDA can cut those costs in half, and how ACE helps retailers navigate the process,” said Ron Lamberty, ACE Chief Marketing Officer, who coordinated the event.  

Randy Gard, COO of Bosselman Enterprises, which owns the Nebraska-based Pump & Pantry convenience store chain, and Jeff Wilkerson, Government Policy and Regulatory Affairs Manager, with California-based Pearson Fuels, one of the nation’s largest E85 distributors, will share the companies’ experience with making the switch and the help they were able to leverage along the way through HBIIP funding. Lamberty will provide an overview of the equipment, infrastructure and costs associated with adding higher ethanol blends, highlighting ACE’s online “Flex Check” E15 compatibility tool.

Jeff Carpenter, Energy Coordinator with USDA Rural Development managing HBIIP, will walk through program details and application process for the latest round of HBIIP funding, which is expected to be announced soon. The workshop will also offer retailers the opportunity to connect with grant writers and others who can help navigate the application process. 

Beyond the workshop, ACE has targeted its market development paid advertising and outreach to help retailers access HBIIP funding, and flexfuelforward.com serves as a resource for these marketers.

In addition to fuel retailers, ACE also has limited capacity for industry stakeholders who want to learn how to approach prospective retailers about this funding opportunity. This event takes place just before the kickoff of The ACE conference welcome reception at 5:30 p.m. on August 10. For more information about The ACE conference visit ethanol.org/events/conference.


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