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Latest potent biofuel made from Sweet sorghum sap




Ethanol made from the stalk's juice has four times the energy yield of the corn-based ethanol, which is already in the marketplace unlike sweet sorghum. Sweet sorghum produces about eight units of energy for every unit of energy used in its production. That's about the same as sugarcane but four times as much as corn.
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Sweet sorghum growers in South Texas and South Florida can get two crops a year because of their tropic-like weather. The crop, though, can be grown as far north as Canada. It grows in dry conditions and tolerates heat well.

In Texas and Florida, the second crop doesn't need to be planted; it sprouts from the first harvest. "We've found the contents are as good as the first crop," Coniglio said.

Sweet sorghum also spares the environment. Less fertilizer is needed than with corn and as a result there is less water contamination, Coniglio said.
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"I think it will add more ethanol to the market," said Morris Bitzer, the executive secretary of the National Sweet Sorghum Producers and Processors Association, which has 500 members in 38 states.

The crop has caught the attention of the U.S. Agriculture Department, which along with Texas A&M University is sponsoring a conference on its use as a biofuel in Houston in August.

"I'm excited that they recognize that there are more feedstocks than just corn and switchgrass," Oklahoma State's Bellmer said.
 

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And to my mind sorghum syrup is far superior to corn syrup. Another great find HoosierRon. We keep seeing the future of ethanol. Hopefully we'll begin seeing the results soon.
 

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It'll take a few years before enough gets planted, harvested and refined before we see a significant input to the ethanol market. I have always been a fan of this plant and remained shocked at why we (U.S.) weren't on the ball, as other countries have already started making use of it as long as two years ago.
 

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Sunday for the first time ever, I had to wait at the local E85 pump as both hoses were bing used when I pulled up. I hope that is a sign of things to come.
 

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I saw a field of Sorghum here in central Indiana last year. Even with the drought it appeared to do well.
 

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this is awesome! more ethanol sources means more ethanol production.....
 

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Nebraska grows alot of sorghum. I still remember visiting outside Lincoln admiring endless fields of sorghum all the way to the horizon.

Hopefully this new ethanol development will stablize corn prices......

Ken
 

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Just hope that the most efficient ways of producing ethanol come to the forefront so we can stop federal subsidies of this and other farm boondoggles. I have no qualms with biofuel at all (though i think algae grown biodiesel might be the best solution), but gas is so expensive now, this technology should be able to stand on its own.
 

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Good news.

One question. If an acre of sweet sorghum is used as a feed stock for an ethanol plant, does that mean that it cannot be used to produce sorghum syrup? In other words can sweet sorghum only be used for one or the other? I'm guessing the processing of the plant extracts all the glucose so you wouldn't be able to still produce the syrup, but can the byproduct still be used?
 

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Good news.

One question. If an acre of sweet sorghum is used as a feed stock for an ethanol plant, does that mean that it cannot be used to produce sorghum syrup? In other words can sweet sorghum only be used for one or the other? I'm guessing the processing of the plant extracts all the glucose so you wouldn't be able to still produce the syrup, but can the byproduct still be used?
I would guess that the bulk of the ethanol results from the fermentation of the sugars in the sap. Sorghum DOES need fertile soil and some irrigation in dry climates, but far less than dent corn.
 
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