As more focus is put on renewable sources of power, many countries are looking to agriculture to supply energy. In both North and South America, there are significant government subsidies for ethanol production from crops as a component of vehicle fuel. The United States Senate has called for a tripling of the use of ethanol for this purpose. Ethanol is produced by using an enzyme (amylase) to break down starch into sugars, which are then fermented by yeast to produce alcohol.
Syngenta has a project in development to produce corn enhanced through biotechnology that expresses high levels of amylase. By using high amylase corn, it is estimated that improved process efficiency could lead to substantial savings in the cost of production of ethanol.