CINCINNATI - One of the nation's largest ethanol producers has teamed up with the The Kroger Co. to expand their sales of ethanol. Kroger announced they're opening 20 ethanol fueling locations in Ohio and Kentucky, making Kroger the first national retailer to offer E85, a blend of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline which is used by Flexible Fuel Vehicles.
CINCINNATI - One of the nation's largest ethanol producers has teamed up with the The Kroger Co. to expand their sales of ethanol. Kroger announced they're opening 20 ethanol fueling locations in Ohio and Kentucky, making Kroger the first national retailer to offer E85, a blend of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline. The fuel is used by Flexible Fuel Vehicles. The ethanol is made by VeraSun.
With the addition of the 20 Kroger locations, VeraSun now has more than 100 retail fueling stations in 11 states and the District of Columbia selling VE85.
E85 is a high-octane, cleaner-burning fuel, with an octane rating of 100 or greater and the highest oxygen content of any fuel available today. The Argonne National Laboratory reported that the use of 4.9 billion gallons of ethanol in the United States during 2006 resulted in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by approximately eight million tons, while the use of E85 alone contributes to a 20 percent reduction in ozone-forming pollution and a 30 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.
Located in Cincinnati, Kroger currently operates almost 2,500 supermarkets and multi-department stores in 31 states. The company also has more than 750 convenience stores and 650 supermarket fuel centers. Currently, Kroger has 40 locations offering E85 in the states of Texas, Ohio and Kentucky.
"The opportunity to offer VE85 at various Kroger locations is an important initiative in meeting our country's growing demand for renewable fuels," said Geoffrey Covert, President of Kroger's Cincinnati/Dayton division. "As the number of Flexible Fuel Vehicles continues to increase, partnering with VeraSun allows us to offer our customers convenient fueling options."
As a result of the VeraSun and Kroger partnership, Enterprise Rent-A-Car will designate four additional rental locations as VE85/FlexFuel branches, including one of its primary locations in Cincinnati on Glenway Ave. Enterprise and VeraSun announced a partnership last month whereby Enterprise committed to concentrate FFVs around select VE85 fueling locations. A quarter of the rental fleet in these new locations will be GM FlexFuel Vehicles. Enterprise will provide ethanol and FFV education materials and maps to Kroger's Ohio VE85 fueling locations inside each automobile.
"Consumers are becoming more interested in experiencing the benefits of fueling with higher blends of ethanol like VE85," said Honnef. "By harnessing the drive and commitment of world-class companies like Kroger, Enterprise and General Motors, we are making significant strides in expanding the availability VE85 and improving consumer education."
VE85(TM) was launched in May 2005 with seven stations in Sioux Falls, South Dakota and is now available in Chicago, Minneapolis-St. Paul and Pittsburgh. In June, VeraSun, GM and Enterprise partnered to open the first E85 retail location in Washington, D.C.
About VeraSun Energy Corporation
VeraSun Energy Corporation (NYSE:VSE) , headquartered in Brookings, South Dakota, is a leading producer of renewable fuel. The Company has 450MMGY of production capacity through four operating ethanol production facilities in Aurora, SD, Fort Dodge, IA, Charles City, IA and Linden, IN. Five facilities are currently under construction in Hartley, IA, Welcome, MN, Reynolds, IN, Albion, NE and Bloomingburg, OH. Upon completion of the new facilities, VeraSun will have an annual production capacity of approximately one billion gallons by the end of 2008. The Company also has plans to extract oil from dried distillers grains, a co-product of the ethanol process, for use in biodiesel production.
The Company markets E85, a blend of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline for use in Flexible Fuel Vehicles (FFVs), directly to fuel retailers under the brand VE85(TM). VE85(TM) is now available at more than 100 retail locations. For more information, please visit VeraSun's websites at http://www.verasun.com/ or http://www.ve85.com/.