When it comes to Maryland agriculture, poultry is king.
But in Iowa — the nation’s first presidential nominating state — corn is the top crop.
Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who is running for the Democratic presidential nomination, is winning praise from corn farmers in Iowa for his support of a federal mandate to blend biofuels into gasoline. But the stance does not sit well with the poultry industry in his home state.
Because much of the biofuel used to meet the federal standard is corn-based ethanol, the requirement helps drive up the price of the crop — a boon for the farmers who grow it. But poultry producers, who fatten their birds with corn feed, want to keep the price low.