Iowa Biodiesel Board

Economic Impacts of Biodiesel in Iowa Bookmark and Share

Biodiesel producers are a vital part of a manufacturing sector that adds substantial value to agricultural commodities produced in Iowa, and makes a significant contribution to the Iowa economy.  Iowa’s 12 biodiesel plants produced 184 million gallons of biodiesel in 2012, accounting for about 17 percent of all U.S. biodiesel.

A study* of 2012 biodiesel production levels shows an increase in economic activity generated by biodiesel production supported almost 5,000 permanent jobs.   The industry’s contribution to the state GDP is almost $400 million.


In 2012, Iowa biodiesel production was an estimated 184 million gallons.  The spending associated with biodiesel production also circulates throughout the entire Iowa economy.


  • 4,982 - The number of full time equivalent jobs in all sector of the Iowa economy supported by the increase in economic activity generated by biodiesel
  • $391 million – the biodiesel industry’s contribution to Iowa’s GDP
  • $236.8 million – amount of household income in Iowa as a result of biodiesel.


Another study released in 2013 shows that biodiesel increases Iowa farmer income by nearly $1.5 billion. The study, conducted by Cardno ENTRIX Economist John Urbanchuk, found that without the Iowa biodiesel industry in 2012:

  • Iowa soybean prices would have been 8.3 percent lower
  • Iowa corn prices would have been 5.4 percent lower
  • Iowa beef cattle and hog prices would have been 1 percent lower


 *LECG, LLC:  John M. Urbanchuk.  “Importance of the Renewable Fuels Industry to the Economy of Iowa,” prepared for the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, January 2013. 

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