August 27, 2008
Three of the giants of US agribusiness: Archer Daniels Midland Company, Deere & Company and Monsanto Company will collaborate on research to explore technologies and processes to turn crop residues into feed and bioenergy products.
The companies will work together to identify environmentally and economically sustainable methods for the harvest, storage and transport of corn stover.
Corn stover can be used in feed for animals, as biomass to generate steam and electricity or as a cellulosic feedstock for biofuel production.
By creating feed and energy products from crop byproducts, farmers can produce more products without farming more acres.
Stover is usually left on the field which helps reduce soil erosion and build up soil organic matter. The companies' research would explore how much stover is required to be left on the fields for that purpose and how much could be taken for feed.
With the corn crop estimated at 12.3 billion in 2008, about 290 million tonnes of stover would be produced.
The companies would also explore how to overcome challenges of moisture in the stover and the role of stover in ethanol production.
Dr. Todd Werpy, Vice President, Research, ADM said the collaborative effort would bring together three agricultural leaders to identify and address the complexities that come with commercializing a new feedstock.