You don’t have to process corn to be able to feed it to cows. If is a high calorie cattle feed as grown.
All the processing does is remove calories, which are turned into ethanol. The remaining cattle feed, which did not need processing in the first place is lower in calories.
Corn prices in my part of the world have gone from $2.65 for 50 pounds of corn prior to ethanol in gasoline to $10.20 now. That increase is much more than the increase in energy costs over the same time period.
Food costs are only about 15% of disposable income in the US, but may be 40-50% of disposable income in other parts of the world.
When corn prices increase, because it is used to make ethanol, someone somewhere cannot no longer afford food.
And no, I don’t mean that people eat hard corn, just that many of the calories in that hard corn are being burned in our cars.
Do the calculations yourself. Average fleet mileage is about 20 miles per gallon. Annual average mileage is about 12,000 miles. That means each car is burning about 60 gallons of ethanol per year. Look up the caloric content of ethanol and see how many calories were burned in that car.
I don’t dispute the calorie consumption. But I read the initial “removed from the food chain” to mean a reduction in available food.
In reality, the ethanol scam has created more corn in production. In spite of a history of dwindling farm acres, the actual crop acres harvested went up from 2002 to 2007 (first date set I found). The ethanol mandate went into effect in 2005.
My argument is that due to the swindle of tax-payer subsidy, more corn acres were planted and harvested, not all of it was taking other crops out of production, total acreage harvested actually rose.
To me, that sounds like an addition to the food chain, or more accurately a secondary production outside the food chain. There may be some reduction, but not all of it if the total acreage grew.