Mato Grosso, Brazil is the largest agricultural state in the world, producing over 40 million metric tons of soybean and maize. It is also the region with the fastest growth rate of maize production in the world, growing at a compound annual growth rate of over 18% a year since 2000. But Mato Grosso is important to study and understand for much more fundamental and powerful reasons. Public infrastructure is extremely poor, private grain storage is lacking, the tropical soils are inhospitable, environmental concerns are highly relevant, distances to ports are lengthy, yet agribusiness flourishes in this low latitude environment. Thus the industry provides a robust case study for the growth and development of the tropical production and processing of broad acre crops such as soybean, maize, cotton, export quality beef, pork, and poultry, and biofuels. Much of the low latitude band around the globe, 15°N to 15°S, suffers from low agricultural productivity, poverty, and malnutrition. Mato Grosso, Brazil, a laboratory for study, shows how agribusiness research and development, environmental enforcement, strong institutions, and entrepreneurship lead to agricultural development that in turn raises the human development index.