Lutherville's AgriMetis eyes growth after raising $23.5 million

When John Draper heads out to seed his fields this spring, he’ll rotate where the corn and soy beans grow.

Plant the crops in exactly the same spot too many years in a row, and he’d end up with weeds that aren’t bothered one bit by the herbicides he sprays on his 300 acres in Queen Anne’s County.

Just like viruses can develop an immunity to drugs or morph slightly so they’re not affected, crop pests become resistant to the chemicals used to kill or repel them. It’s one of the biggest problems Draper and farmers across the country contend with every planting season, and one leading chemical companies spend millions trying to address.

A Lutherville company, AgriMetis, sees a business opportunity in helping manufacturers of agricultural chemicals accelerate their research and development into new pesticides, herbicides and other crop protection products, by offering up promising compounds that are nearly ready to begin the lengthy regulatory approval process.

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