About Us

“Inspiration occurs when common passions and work ethic are combined.”


Maybe this isn’t an age old saying, but it represents the genesis of MARC-IV. Originally created to conduct Market Analysis, Research, and Consulting to help develop new, innovative industrial products from renewable agricultural materials, MARC-IV (M4) has grown to a full-service corporation retained by small start-ups to national trade associations to Fortune 500’s.  Two of its founders – Steve Howell and Alan Weber – lead the company today.


From their earliest professional days before becoming business partners, both Howell and Weber were driven to look beyond existing frameworks for agricultural products and applications.  They came from different backgrounds but were united in their desire to create new demand opportunities for agriculture and protect our environment for future generations.  Steve’s start with Procter and Gamble as a quality control manager working with new products and Alan’s graduate work focusing on the viability of farmer-owned businesses set an ultimate collision course that culminated in the creation of MARC-IV. When chemical engineer met agricultural economist in 1993, they established a consulting business with a mission to discover sustainably-produced new products and develop new applications for existing products that benefit the agricultural community and enhance the environment.  And that is precisely what has been accomplished!


Howell and Weber have worked on biodiesel together for many years in different roles, but have been a leading force in the development and execution of technical, regulatory, economic, and policy aspects needed to get the biodiesel industry to the 1 billion gallon-per-year mark achieved in 2012.  Today, M4 has expanded with the addition of Ms. Rebecca Richardson and Ms. Rachel Burton and continues its longstanding development role for the biobased economy.


M4’s unique set of economic and policy skills are combined with hands-on engineering, business development and strategic thinking expertise that can be a valuable resource to any company, trade association, state or federal agency, or others wishing to develop industrial products from agriculture.  And now, after twenty years, we’ve only scratched the surface!
If you have an agricultural industrial product—or just a vision for one—and need some help in navigating the road ahead M4 can be your co-pilot.



We just might be able to help you ‘Discover the Power of Nature.’