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In late 1999 and early 2000, USDA surveyed 28 ethanol plants, both wet and dry mills, to estimate their 1998 costs of production (net corn costs and cash variable costs). These ethanol plants processed more than 400 million bushels of corn and sorghum in 1998 to produce more than 1.1 billion gallons of ethanol. The average variable cost of production of ethanol (the sum of the net corn cost plus net variable operating costs) weighted by industry sector was 93.9 cents per gallon. The net feedstock cost averaged about 53 cents per gallon for dry mills and 48 cents per gallon for wet mills.


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