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Corn is the state grain

(CIFN file photo)

Corn is now the official state grain of Illinois.

This was made possible through Illinois House Bill 470. Corn joins other state symbols which include the state dance of square dancing, state snack food of popcorn, state fruit of the GoldRush apple and the state pie of pumpkin.

Corn has been an important part of the state's economy for years. Ag commodities generate over $19 billion annually for Illinois and corn accounts for 54 percent of the total, according to information from the Illinois Department of Agriculture. Corn is a huge part of Central Illinois with Archer Daniels Midland and Tate & Lyle having a strong presence in Decatur.

Illinois lawmakers passed over 200 new laws which took effect with the New Year on Monday. These laws impact the lives of nearly all Illinois residents.

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