Trade mission tour to stop at two ethanol plants

By Holly Jessen | September 21, 2015

An Illinois Department of Agriculture-led tour begins Sept. 21, with stops at a variety of grain-related businesses around the state, including Marquis Energy LLC, a 140 MMgy ethanol plant in Hennepin, Illinois, and Archer Daniels Midland Co.’s facility in Decatur, Illinois, which produces ethanol, among many other products.

More than 30 international buyers hailing from Mexico, Ecuador, China, Taiwan, South Korea and Vietnam are part of the tour, which is an effort to increase Illinois grain export sales. The Illinois tour held in 2014 generated about $198 million in sales, according to the state ag department.

The tour began with a meeting with state ag department representatives. "The export of Illinois grain is vital to the growth of our industry, and this tour is an integral part of our marketing plan," said Agriculture Director Philip Nelson.  "Nearly half of the corn and soybeans produced in our state are exported, resulting in billions in direct sales annually.  Through the Illinois Grain Tour we can personally show foreign (investors) how Illinois can help feed the world."

Other stops on the tour:

* University of Illinois research plot in Sangamon County

* GSI, a manufacturer of steel farm bins and related equipment in Assumption

* Clarkson Grain, a grain, oilseed and ingredient supplier in Mattoon

* Specialty Grains, a corn and soybean supplier in Gibson City

* Stewart Spreading, equipment manufacturer and distributor, in Sheridan

* Chicago Mercantile Exchange/Chicago Board of Trade in Chicago.

For more information, see the Illinois ag department webpage