DES MOINES, Iowa — For decades Iowans and local economies have reaped the rewards of both major parties having first in the nation status when it came to caucusing.

But now, as the Democrat National Committee decided on Friday, Iowa will be replaced at the top spot. The decision leaves Iowa industry leaders concerned about the lack of economic boosts the state has enjoyed.

“Well last time around was $11.3 million just for the week of caucus,” said Greg Edwards, the Chief Executive Officer of Catch Des Moines. “Caucus starts two years in advance, so it’s millions of dollars. It’s going to be a huge loss.”

Edwards was optimistic about the Iowa GOP still having their first in the nation status, and that there still will be an economic impact from having Republican presidential candidates. But he could not put a number on what the Democrats losing the status means for Iowa’s economy.

The renewable energy industry grew by leaps and bounds by having the benefit of presidential candidates from both parties catering to the ethanol industry. Now it leaves leaders of biofuel in the state wondering how the message of ethanol can be spread across the country.

“It has been an incredible educational opportunity. There is all those cynics out on the east and west coast they are like, ‘oh yeah go to Iowa and bow down to corn’ or something. It was never about that, that never worked. There’s big powerful money interests out there that have a lot more. But what it really did do is it gave us a chance to tell our story,” said Monte Shaw, the Executive Director of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association.

Shaw said there were so many opportunities for presidential candidates to go to small towns, hear from workers making good wages and see the support for ethanol with their own two eyes.

Both Edwards and Shaw hope that the Iowa Democrats can do something to draw Democratic presidential candidates to the state for elections to come.