The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has waived a limitation on selling gasoline that contains more than 10% ethanol for model year 2001 through 2006 passenger vehicles, including cars, SUVs and light pickup trucks.

The waiver, which applies to fuel that contains up to 15% ethanol, is being called, by the National Chicken Council, "another giveaway to the ethanol interests" that will only complicate price problems for both animal feed users and retail consumers. “E15 may be good for ethanol producers and corn farmers, but it is clearly detrimental to all other interested parties,” said Bill Roenigk, senior vice president of the NCC. “To the extent the EPA and the ethanol industry actually manage to force more ethanol into the nation’s motor gasoline, they will put even more pressure on the already very tight supply of corn."

The U.S. Department of Agriculture said the decision is "another important step to get existing ethanol production capacity into the market to support and create jobs in rural America, improve our nation's energy security, protect our environment and provide the renewable fuels industry with the support it needs to grow and mature."

The waiver does not extend to motorcycles, heavy-duty vehicles or non-road engines.