June 17, 2009

Grocery Gang's efforts don't change the facts

A couple of weeks ago - at the same time an ethanol/renewable fuels hearing on Capitol Hill was going on - the Grocery Manufacturers Association and its surrogates attempted to get their names in the news by releasing a couple of "studies" about food costs, corn and ethanol.

"Studies" is in quotes because to call them an actual study is a stretch. A big stretch.

Rick Tolman, CEO of the National Corn Growers Association, put it this way: It was an attempt by GMA to keep its "comedy of errors on the media stage" with "a pair of non-peer-reviewed works of fiction that they dare to call studies. Both are done by members of what should be called the Cheap Corn Coalition."

You can find Tolman's "Our View" column here.

With GMA continuing to spend significant amounts of money trying to blame corn and ethanol on food prices (a diversion, perhaps, from its members good fortunes and profits?), Tolman wonders...

At this rate, it’s not hard to project corn and ethanol’s detractors will soon spend more on propaganda to bash the nation’s most important crop than consumers are paying in increased costs at their local market. Not a very constructive investment, unless their ultimate goals is to trounce corn prices back to the stone age and drive family farmers out of business.

The truth is, GMA and its assorted partners have been proven wrong time and again, and as the American Coalition for Ethanol put it, food processor margins have more to do with retail food prices than ethanol, corn, market speculation or even rising oil prices.

The Grocery Gang's argument has been full of holes since it threw the first volley in a very poorly organized press event a little more than a year ago.

For a couple of holes in the Gang's arguement, check out this post. (But there are more holes...Like this hole or this hole or this hole or this hole or this hole or this hole or this hole or this hole or this hole or this hole or this hole.)

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