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10 of the most innovative small businesses of 2013

cows cattle commodities agriculture

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AMP Americas

AMP Americas is a Chicago-based company that makes compressed natural gas. While the alternative fuel market already has plenty of businesses that call themselves "innovative," this one truly is: Its fuel is converted from cow manure.

The company's efforts were highlighted in March in The New York Times, which said the fuel was being used by a dairy farm to power it 42 tractor-trailers that deliver its milk to different states. The article also cited Energy Department officials, who called the technology a "pacesetter."

David Reede | All Canada Photos | Getty Images