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The U.S. government decides to go after an agro-business giant with a price-fixing accusation, based on the evidence submitted by their star witness, vice president-turned-informant Mark Whitacre.

It's October 1992. Mark Whitacre is a Vice-President at a division of Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), a Fortune 500 company based in Decatur, Illinois that produces among other things lysine, a corn based derivative used in almost all manufactured foods. A virus is found in their production plant, which is affecting the production of the lysine. Mark receives a telephone call from a Japanese competitor, who visited the plant recently and who implies that there is a mole in the company that works for that Japanese competitor, he who infected the lysine with the virus among other nefarious activities against ADM. He will divulge the identity of the mole for $10 million. Based on that information, the company brings in the FBI to investigate. On the urging of Mark's wife Ginger, Mark uses the opportunity to tell the FBI that he is aware of price fixing of lysine by ADM and its competitors, as Mark has been sent to meetings where it has been discussed. The FBI convinces Mark to become their eyes and ears to obtain proof of the price fixing agreements, those eyes and ears which includes Mark helping them bug meeting rooms with surveillance equipment. As Mark goes through this process for close to three years, he has a naive view of what his actions mean for himself in relation to his job at ADM. He also has to deal with other goings-on at ADM which may not shine a positive light on himself. These activities in combination may have either caused or be a factor in his his battle with bi-polar disorder.


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