The federal ethanol program should include a provision for relief from the mandate for corn-derived ethanol in the event of a crop shortage, the National Chicken Council told a National Research Council committee investigating the impact of the regulation. Such a shortage could leave poultry and meat producers lacking in animal feed, according to the council.

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Under the Renewable Fuels Standard, the motor fuel industry is required to add specified amounts of biofuels to gasoline every year – including 12 billion gallons of corn-derived ethanol this year. Some 36% of the nation’s corn crop will go into ethanol production by 2015, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture forecasts.