ANKENY, Iowa – Casey’s General Stores Inc. is adding E15 to more than 60 new locations this summer after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved year-round sales for the 15% ethanol blend.
- Casey's is No. 4 in the Top 40 update to CSP's 2018 Top 202 ranking of convenience-store chains by number of retail outlets.
Ankeny, Iowa-based Casey's has 2,100 convenience store in 16 states in the Midwest and the South. The chain began testing E15 in 2017, and then in 2018 announced plans to add it to possibly more than 500 locations in partnership with Prime the Pump, a nonprofit that assists fuel retailers with adding ethanol blends, and ethanol industry group Growth Energy. Casey’s, like most retailers selling E15, markets it as Unleaded 88.
On May 30, the EPA announced its final rulemaking that provides E15 with a waiver of summertime Reid vapor pressure (RVP) regulations, which previously had halted its sale in most markets to any vehicle other than a flex-fuel vehicle from June 1 to Sept. 15. Many large chains such as Casey’s, Sheetz and Kum & Go had been pushing for the RVP waiver, because it would avoid having to change out signage each summer and confusing customers accustomed to buying E15, which typically is priced lower than E10. The EPA has approved E15 for vehicle models 2001 and newer.
The retailer and Growth Energy credit the RVP waiver for the ramp-up in installations.
“The summertime E15 restrictions have been a major concern for us for a long time and would typically slow down our E15 expansion,” said Nathaniel Doddridge, director of fuels for Casey’s. “Now that we know we can provide our guests with a consistent experience at the fuel pump year-round, we are expanding E15 at a faster pace to stay ahead of our competition.”
“We are thrilled that Casey’s will be rolling out E15 at dozens of new sites this summer, and know from conversations with retailers all over the country that they will soon be joined by others who’ve been waiting for this day,” said Emily Skor, CEO of Growth Energy, Washington, D.C. More than 1,800 sites in 31 states currently sell E15, according to the group.