Striking gold with Canola in Decatur Co. - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Striking gold with Canola in Decatur Co.

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DECATUR COUNTY, GA (WALB) -

Folks in Decatur County say they've found the next cash crop.  Gold as far as the eye can see, but it's not just nice to look at. Canola is now being called a "cash crop".

"We've attracted the interest of the 'big guns' on Wall Street and an investment banking firm turned to us and said we're probably 'the prettiest girl at the dance' and I believe that," said Executive Chairman Paul Pereira.

If it weren't for the Canola crop, none of it would be possible.

"From the farmers field here in Decatur County, within 20 miles of this facility, we can grow enough to get started. We're taking the Canola seed and feeding that oil to bacteria, producing a pellet as a biopolymer that we can ship across the street to converters, who will turn that pellet into a plastic article," said Vice President Michael Smith.

Those plastic articles can also dissolve into the dirt after 60 days, and be reused as fertilizer to help the crops that created it.

Those part of the process have even coined the phrase "agri-facture" to describe how it all works. Meredian is the only plant in the world using biopolymers for plastic replacement with 100% biodegrability and they plan to continue to expand.

"We have 10 fermentation tanks. For every fermentation tank that's 10,000 acres of crops, so [if] we get all 10 working that could be over 100,000 acres of crops.

That means people can expect to see a lot of yellow fields when traveling through Decatur County.

To learn more about the process follow the link below to watch a video:

http://www.meredianpha.com/overview/

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