Carbon dioxide (CO2) shortages are still being experienced in the US despite recent improvements in the production of ethanol.
CO2 is captured as a by-product in ethanol production which at full capacity accounts for roughly 40% of the US national carbon dioxide supply, according to trade group Renewable Fuels Association (RFA).
When ethanol plants were idled earlier this year due to a reduction in fuel demand caused by lockdowns to restrict the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, it contributed to CO2 shortages across the US. This led to concerns in the food and beverage industry as carbon dioxide is used for beverage carbonation, food processing and food preservation (freezing, storage, transportation and modified atmospheric packing).
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