United Cooperative Fitting Cenex Sites for Flex-Fueling

Installs ethanol blender pumps across southcentral Wisconsin

BEAVER DAM, Wis. -- United Cooperative has been selected to receive a $448,500 Rural Energy for America Program grant to assist with the installation of 36 ethanol flex-fuel blender pumps and seven biodiesel dispensers at 11 of United Cooperative's Cenex convenience stores located throughout southcentral Wisconsin.

Blender pumps use existing fuels available at the location to offer fuel and ethanol blends directly from the dispenser. Five of the locations--Iron Ridge, Pickett, Poynette, Reedsburg and Wyocena--have completed the overhaul and are now operating with the new blender pumps. Watertown will be finished in June.

"The renovations to all 11 convenience stores will be completed by the 2012 year end," said Greg Adkins, United Cooperative convenience store division supervisor. "It takes about two to three weeks per site to complete the overhaul. Two locations in Baraboo and one in Hartford are still in the planning stages; however, within the next few months, Beaver Dam, Hustisford, and Watertown will be completed and able to offer customers more options. Our flex-fuel blender pumps let the consumer decide what they want to put in their vehicle based on type and age of vehicle, price, and performance."

The flex-fuel blender pumps dispense fuel blends from E15 (15% ethanol), to E30 (30% ethanol), all the way up to an E85 (85% ethanol). E15 is usable in 2001 and newer vehicles while higher ethanol blends are for flex-fuel vehicles. With a flex-fuel blender pump, a motorist can choose the ethanol blend that maximizes fuel efficiency in their specific car or truck.

"Because of this grant and United Cooperative's connection to United Ethanol [in Milton, Wis.], we are able to expand the availability of ethanol blends to our customers, and ethanol blends are typically lower-cost fuel options compared to regular gasoline," said Adkins.

"More vehicles on the road operating with E85 substantially lessens our dependence on foreign oil,  because we are then only using a 15% gas mixture," ha added. "Studies show using ethanol in the Wisconsin fuel marketplace helps lower gasoline prices by reducing the need for importing expensive, high-octane, petroleum-based gasoline components or more crude oil from unstable market regions of the world, like the Middle East."

Formed in 1936, United Cooperative is a full-service cooperative offering feed, grain, agronomy, and energy products and services to Wisconsin farmers and consumers.