The USDA has chosen two new areas in Missouri to participate in a program promoting biomass energy crops.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says the program will pay farmers to plant giant miscanthus, a perennial grass that can be used for energy production.
An event starting Monday at the Danforth Plant Science Center is looking to match up investors with emerging agricultural technology companies from across the globe.
The third annual Ag Innovation Showcase will draw international venture capitalists and corporate agricultural investors like Monsanto, Syngenta and Dupont.
Showcase organizer Mark Gorski says sixteen agricultural start-ups from the Netherlands, India, and a number of other countries will be vying for their attention.
Representatives of the biomass energy industry have gathered in St. Louis this week.
They're here to discuss technologies for turning everything from crop residues to municipal trash into liquid fuels, heat, and electricity.
Tim Portz is the program director for BBI international, the company organizing the International Biomass Conference & Expo.
He says it's not going to be easy for the biomass industry to gain a foothold in the marketplace of already established U.S. energy producers.
St. Louis Public Radio is a service of the University of Missouri-St. Louis.