Investment by the Iowa Corn Promotion Board in research and business development allows for a direct return on Iowa corn farmer checkoff investments. Research programs aim to find new innovative uses of corn and improve the production efficiency of growing corn.
Finding new uses for corn
The checkoff funds invested by the Iowa Corn Promotion Board are finding new ways to use corn. This research will result in higher blends of renewable fuel, better livestock feed, new bioplastics and better understanding of the impact of corn production on land area, commonly referred to as international indirect land use. The result will help preserve existing markets and develop new markets for corn.
The key objectives for this research are to:
- Develop new markets for corn
- Develop new corn based bioplastics
- Overcome the current limits to ethanol use in gasoline (blend wall) to increase use of biofuels
- Improve the performance of distillers grain as a livestock feed
Improving the productivity of the corn plant
The Iowa Corn Promotion Board is investing checkoff funds to increase the efficiency and reduce the environmental impact of corn production. Projects include research to improve control of seedling diseases in corn, phenotyping to unlock the secrets of the corn genome, water quality monitoring and the development of traits to improve the use of nitrogen fertilizer using biotechnology. Iowa Corn continues to leverage the corn genome to gain understanding of how the corn plant works, so as to improve our ability to get more productivity out of an acre of ground.
The key objectives of this research are to:
- Convert the corn genome sequence into functional knowledge
- Develop biotechnology traits for improved nitrogen utilization
- Support research to improve the efficiency of corn production
- Improve water quality
Isosorbide is a corn derived additive used to improve the properties of the plastic.
Isosorbide Applications is finding ways to utilize the corn based material in consumer products.
Mixed Alcohol Fuel is evaluation of blending several corn-based alcohols with gasoline to measure improved performance and reduced emissions.
Hemicellulose is one of the components of the corn stover and kernels. This is a potential source for new products such as fuel and bioplastics.
Feeding Vitamin C to beef cattle could offset the negative impact of sulfur in feed rations using distillers grain and solubles.
Indirect Land Use models use price elasticity of corn as an important input into the computer models that measure international indirect land use attributed to corn production.
Nitrogen Utilization is inserting genes into a transgenic corn plant to improve the nitrogen utilization by the plant.
Functional Genomics is identifying the genes in a corn plant and then understanding the function of each gene.