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Best Practices for Communicating with Your Customers about Biodiesel

Posted in: Fuel and Trucking, Biodiesel

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/// Guest post by contributor Jon ScharingsonRenewable Energy Group

Biodiesel blends are becoming more commonplace at travel centers across the country. In Illinois and Iowa the majority of the larger travel centers are offering biodiesel blends year round. The blend offering may range from B5 to B20 depending on the time of year and the blend economics. 

There are no requirements to label the fuel when offering up to B5 blends. However, it’s important to communicate to your customers that you are offering biodiesel blends. Biodiesel acts as a natural solvent and it has the ability to clean filters and engines that historically may have accumulated material associated with diesel fuel. So, it may be necessary for customers to change out the filters — once or twice — within the first few thousand miles of using biodiesel. 

Another area for communication is the cloud point. Depending on the biodiesel blend offered the cloud point of the blended fuel may change. This is especially important when switching to biodiesel for the first time. This communication can be as simple as using flyers, posters and banners throughout your travel center.

When offering a higher blend it’s recommended to market fuel with a B6 up to a B20 label. This informs the customer that they are purchasing a fuel with some level of biodiesel and provides the truck stop with the flexibility to raise or lower the biodiesel blend depending upon the blending economics.

Why the move to biodiesel blends? For some it’s the economic value proposition as many states offer incentives that make biodiesel blends an attractive economic option. In other cases, it’s the green benefits of biodiesel and offering a fuel that has reduced greenhouse gas emissions. For others, it’s the technical aspects as biodiesel is recognized for its lubricity when added to ULSD in the marketplace.  

Renewable Energy Group has a technical support team in place to assist travel centers in making the decision to integrate biodiesel for the first time and help with ongoing customer communications. I also encourage travel center owners and operators to visit biodiesel.org. This site developed by the National Biodiesel Board offers a wealth of information, in term of technical information about biodiesel.   

/// Read more guest posts on biodiesel posts here

Renewable Energy Group is Hosting a Cold Weather Blending Webinar September 18
Renewable Energy Group is hosting a free webinar on the essential know-how tips for cold weather biodiesel blending on September 18 from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. CST. During the webinar, experts from REG will focus on cold weather biodiesel blending guidelines, blend planning, B100 transportation basics and update participants on what’s happening in the biodiesel market. Register for the Cold Weather Blending Webinar here

{Guest Post} Guest post provided by NATSO Chairman's Circle member Jon Scharingson, Renewable Energy Group. Renewable Energy Group® is a leading North American biodiesel producer with a nationwide distribution and logistics system. With more than 210 million gallons of owned/operated annual production capacity at biorefineries across the country, REG is a proven biodiesel partner in the distillate marketplace. Learn more about Renewable Energy Group.

The opinions and advice given by guest post contributors are not necessarily those of NATSO Inc. The posts should not be considered legal advice. Qualified professionals should be sought regarding advice and questions specific to your circumstances.

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About the Author

Jon Scharingson

Jon Scharingson