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We all know how popular ethanol is among most U.S. politicians these days, so tomorrow could be quite the party in D.C. as political and industry representatives celebrate National Agriculture Day 2007. This year, the day is subtitled, "A Salute to American Agriculture" and "Convergence of Food and Fuel." The Archer Daniels Midland Company, representatives of which will be present in D.C., says the day is "designed to highlight the scope of American agriculture, an industry that puts food on ou

The Archer Daniels Midland company is one of the biggest recipients of farm subsidies in America, and interestingly enough they are also a huge proponent of corn ethanol. They are among the world's largest processors of soy, corn, and other crops. They just announced there fourth quarter results, and unsurprisingly they were up. A lot. Overall, profits were up twenty percent to $441 million. Corn and oilseed processing really shone though at forty-two and fifty percent increases in profit.

Sure, you can debate the benefits and costs of ethanol vs. biodiesel, but here's something you can't really debate. In America, biodiesel gets a lot of support from home brewers and Willie Nelson while ethanol gets huge corporate support from groups like ADM and Citigroup (In other countries, Brazil for example, ADM is getting into biodiesel). In fact, ADM executives will give presentations at Citigroup's "Ethanol on the Cob" biofuels conference. The 's' in biofuels implies biodiesel might be di

The company is only two months old, but already it's got plans to build an ethanol plant in Kankakee, Ill. Alternative Energy Sources (AENS) was formed in June and quickly optioned the 248-acre Kankakee Industrial Park, which is next to a newly permitted regional sanitary landfill. AENS wants to build an ethanol plant capable of producing 110 million gallons a year on the site, and construction should start in six to nine months. The company is also building an ethanol plant in central Iowa.

Thank Sasha Lilley if you've always suspected that the way agribusiness pushes ethanol is a bit fishy and wanted some facts to back up your feelings. Lilley, a writer for CorpWatch, wrote an excellent piece (reprinted over at Guerrilla News Network) detailing Archer Daniels Midland's (ADM) use of not-so-clean coal to make ethanol and the company's tight relationship with the U.S. federal government, which is now conveniently promoting ethanol. ADM happens to grow a lot of corn.