Higher Protein Content Boosts Value of Crop

Farmers have often heard that higher-quality soybeans could generate more value. Now, a new soy-checkoff-funded study shows how much more.
The price of soybeans is driven by the combined value of soybean meal, oil and hulls, a measurement known as the estimated processed value (EPV). The study, conducted by Centrec Consulting Group LLC, shows how EPV increases when farmers raise the protein content in their soybeans. In fact, increasing protein content by 1 percentage point, when yield and oil levels remain the same, increases a crop’s value per acre.
“Higher-quality soybean meal is a win-win for both the soybean farmer and livestock and poultry producers,” says Laura Foell, chair of the United Soybean Board’s Meal Action Team and a soybean farmer from Schaller, Iowa. “Farmers can provide animal ag with the quality of feed the industry demands, and the value farmers get in return will rise.”
The checkoff conducted the study in 13 states where EPV increased by between $7.70 and $12.96 per acre, depending on the state. The state-by-state increases are as follows:
•    Illinois: $11.16
•    Indiana: $10.62
•    Iowa: $12.33
•    Kansas: $7.70
•    Kentucky: $10.00
•    Michigan: $8.83
•    Minnesota: $12.43
•    Missouri: $9.07
•    Nebraska: $12.96
•    North Dakota: $10.81
•    Ohio: $9.25
•    South Dakota: $11.35
•    Wisconsin: $11.26
Farmers in regions with higher-quality soybeans receive better prices than those in areas with lower protein content. That is because higher-quality soybeans create more demand. That brings processors more value and allows them to pay more to farmers. Seed selection is the key to growing soybeans that are high in quality. Farmers should ask their seed dealer or visit www.GrowSoybeanValue.com to find varieties that will produce greater protein without sacrificing yield.
The 70 farmer-directors of USB oversee the investments of the soy checkoff to maximize profit opportunities for all U.S. soybean farmers. These volunteers invest and leverage checkoff funds to increase the value of U.S. soy meal and oil, to ensure U.S. soybean farmers and their customers have the freedom and infrastructure to operate, and to meet the needs of U.S. soy’s customers. As stipulated in the federal Soybean Promotion, Research and Consumer Information Act, the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service has oversight responsibilities for USB and the soy checkoff.