As the availability of E15 continues to grow, retailers will have more opportunities to expand their business at the pump with the fuel
This ease of implementation and the expanded product availability have led to a growth in the use of E15 nationwide. In 2018, the number of terminals offering pre-blended E15 grew from fewer than five to more than 150, according to research collected from Growth Energy. What often surprises retailers is that E15 can easily be added to an existing fuel infrastructure without the need for special or additional equipment.
Mike O’Brien, vice president of market development at Growth Energy, said, “One of our top initiatives has been focusing on expanding the infrastructure for E15. The increase in consumer demand, along with growth in market access has led to an increase in pre-blended E15.”
“For example, 12 of the top 20 retailer retail chains are currently already selling E15. Retailers like Casey’s, Kum & Go, QuikTrip, Kwik Trip, RaceTrac, Family Express, Thorntons, Protec, Murphy USA and Minnoco have been offering E15 for close to five years now. Today, there are 1,800 sites around the country offering E15, and by the end of 2019 we expect more than 1,900 sites will be selling E15,” he said.
Magellan Midstream, which operates one of the largest networks of refined products pipelines in the country, began offering E15 in 2017 at 81 of its terminals located throughout 24 states. The company also provides E15 services to customers, including the gasoline shipper, inventory owner, and supplier for easier distribution and implementation of a wider variety of, renewable fuel sources.
“Magellan’s goal is to provide our customers with multiple options, so they can seamlessly adapt to changing market conditions,” says Bruce Heine, vice president of government and media affairs at Magellan. “We offer service for E0, E10, E15, E30, and Ethanol Flex Fuel, so that our customers can make their own choices regarding what levels of ethanol content they want to offer.”
Demand for E15 is also on the rise from consumers because the fuel performs well and typically retails for 3 to 10 cents less per gallon than other fuels. Consumers also like the fact that E15 burns cleaner, so it helps their engines while being a little better for the air.
As the momentum for E15 continues to expand and grow the biofuel footprint, not only will retailers have more opportunities to offer a wider variety of products for their customers seeking alternative fuel sources, but they will also be able to provide these products at a lower price, giving them a price advantage against their competitors.
This post is sponsored by Growth Energy