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The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announces joint funding with Broin Cos. in the development of a bio-refinery plant that will commercialize cellulosic ethanol technology developed by DuPont. The DOE funding accelerates the development of a bio-refinery at Broin's Emmetsburg, IA, facility to 2009.

DuPont subsidiary Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc. has provided significant market and agronomy insight throughout the project. Deere & Company is working with DuPont on corn stover collection and transportation logistics. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory has been a key partner in the development of the pretreatment and fermentation technology.

The first feedstock for the Emmetsburg operation will be corn cobs. In addition, the bio-refinery facility will utilize waste streams from the grain ethanol operations.

Cargill announces Gregory Page, will be its CEO/Pres effective June 1, 2007.

Page will succeed Warren Staley, Cargill's Chairman/
CEO, when he retires as CEO on June 1, having reached the mandatory retirement age of 65 for Cargill executives.

Page was named to his current position as Cargill Pres/COO in June 2000. After joining Cargill in 1974 as a trainee, Page held a number of positions in the company's U.S. animal nutrition business before transferring to Singapore in 1985 to lead its animal nutrition operations in Asia. In 1989, he moved to Thailand to build Cargill's poultry processing business in that country. He returned to the U.S. in 1992, where he assumed leadership of Cargill's North American and Australian beef and pork operations in 1995.

In 1998, Page was named corporate vice president and sector president, with responsibilities for the company's financial markets and beef and pork groups.

Syngenta Seeds is launching capital improvements totaling over $25 million to significantly expand capacity at six of its Midwest corn and soybean seed supply centers. The seed supply facilities to be expanded are located in Jefferson, IA; Lone Tree, IA; Pekin, IL; Phillips, NE; Tuscola, IL; and Waterloo, NE.

The facility upgrades scheduled at Jefferson, Tuscola and Pekin will enable Syngenta to process and ship 50% more soybean seed at these facilities next season. With more growers preferring to purchase soybean seed in bulk and treated with CruiserMaxx Beans seed treatments, the improvements will facilitate state-of-the-art treatment capabilities, as well as loading and shipping of large bulk containers.

The capital improvements will begin this spring after seed shipments for 2007 planting are complete. The work is expected to be finished by the end of 2007 in order to accommodate customer orders for 2008.

New Holland introduces new logo and equipment decals, symbolizing the brand's tradition of leadership and innovation to be used on all New Holland products, advertising and facilities worldwide.

The yellow in the new logo and decals represents New Holland's longstanding legacy as the industry leader in haytools and an innovator in combine technology, while the blue pays tribute to the company's Ford tractor heritage.

No changes are planned for equipment paint colors. New Holland hay tools will retain their distinctive red and yellow paint; combines will remain yellow, and New Holland tractors will remain blue.

Also, the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) presents its 2007 "Eye on Biodiesel" to the company. The award is designed to recognize individuals who have advanced the National Biodiesel Board's mission of public education and industry growth.

In announcing the award, the NBB said, "New Holland in 2006 approved the use of 20% biodiesel (B20) in all of its equipment using New Holland engines. It is the first original equipment manufacturer (OEM) to announce full support of B20 in all of the diesel engines that it produces. In 2003, it was the first large farm equipment company to join the Biodiesel Alliance that connects the wide-spread support base of biodiesel."

Charlene Finck, Editor of FARM JOURNAL magazine, is named VP, Editorial for Farm Journal Media. She succeeds Sonja Hillgren, who passed away in December.

Finck will oversee editorial for all Farm Journal Media magazines and work with the editors of Farm Journal Media's other outlets such as AgWeb, Pro Farmer, AgDay and U.S. Farm Report.

Fink joined the magazine staff in 1989 as Machinery Editor and has won numerous writing awards throughout her career, including American Agricultural Editors' Association "Writer of the Year."

Bill Newham also joins the firm as VP and Livestock Group Publisher. Newham will oversee the company's livestock operations, including managing the Elite Producer Business Conference.

Deere & Company acquires LESCO Inc., Cleveland, OH, a leading supplier of consumable products, such as fertilizer, seed and chemicals, for lawn maintenance professionals and golf course superintendents. Upon closing, the company will become part of John Deere Landscapes, a leading wholesale distributor of irrigation, nursery, lighting and landscape materials in the U.S.

The transaction will roughly double the number of store locations for John Deere Landscapes with the addition of LESCO's 332 stores, strengthening its presence across the U.S. and especially in the eastern seaboard states.

Also at Deere, the company has agreed to acquire Conserva Pak Seeding Systems from Vale Farms Ltd., Saskatchewan, Canada. The Conserva Pak hydraulic-shank product line will complement Deere's most recent solutions in the expanding air hoe drill market around the world.

After the spring 2007 seeding season, John Deere dealers will be the exclusive channel to support new and existing Conserva Pak products

Archer Daniels Midland announces CEO/Pres Patricia A. Woertz has been elected Chmn of the company's board of directors.

Woertz, who joined the firm in April 2006, succeeds G. Allen Andreas who resigned from the board. Independent Dir Patrick Moore continues in the role of Lead Dir.

In the March article about Rabobank, we incorrectly reported the bank as the second largest in the world in 2006. In fact, it was the world's 25th largest bank.

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