Web Series Profiles South Dakota Soybean Growers

November 1, 2021

A brand new web series, the South Dakota Soybean Checkoff Check-In, launched this month and is available to view online.

Sponsored by South Dakota soybean producers through the checkoff, the series is designed to showcase the many different ways agriculture—along with the growers who keep driving the industry forward—makes a positive impact on communities across the state.

It also aims to educate producers and consumers alike on the new markets and demand growth currently being developed through checkoff efforts.

Seeing the broader perspective

By visiting different communities and lifting up the individual voices of producers across the state, the Checkoff Check-In will celebrate the individuals and communities that have made agriculture the foundation of South Dakota’s growth and prosperity.

“I think the value in sharing all of these stories is that sometimes we become so involved in our own operations and businesses that we don’t see the broader perspective and the many ways our farmers are leaders within their communities,” says Jerry Schmitz, South Dakota Soybean Executive Director. “We want to highlight the strength and resiliency shown by producers across the state.”

“We also want folks to gain an understanding of how the checkoff works,” he adds, highlighting the various ways South Dakota soybean producers support demand for their product through the checkoff. “The checkoff has tremendous value, a very good return on investment and is helping growers achieve a more profitable future.”

Unique approach will bring ag narrative to life

Each installment of the web series will include three standalone segments:

  • Around Here, which profiles an individual farm community and some of its strengths and challenges
  • In the Field, an in-depth look at an operation or two connected to that community
  • Bean Market Insights, which gives viewers a better understanding of new and emerging markets and how checkoff dollars are supporting demand.

There will also be an emphasis on showing various approaches to the business of farming as seen across the state, putting a spotlight on the ag co-op model, diversified operations, soil health initiatives and more.

Schmitz is also eager to amplify the role women play within farming—one that has gone understated for far too long.

“Something that really stands out for me is that there are women today who are leading the way, both on their operation and on the advocacy front,” he says. “We’ve always known there are women in agriculture, but this is a great opportunity to share those stories.”

Likewise, the role younger producers are playing on and off the farm will take center stage in the series.

“You can’t throw everyone into the same bucket,” says Schmitz. “We really want to be able to highlight the diversity of operations across the state.”

Watch the latest Checkoff Check-In episodes

The first three installments of the South Dakota Soybean Checkoff Check-In highlight the rural communities of Mellette, Salem and Mt. Vernon. New episodes will roll out in the coming months.

Checkoff Check-In: Mellette, SD

Checkoff Check-In Salem, SD

Checkoff Check-In: Mt. Vernon, SD

Checkoff Check-In: Brookings, SD

If you’re interested in representing your operation or local community in an upcoming episode, please contact Mariah Kessler, Communications Specialist, at mkessler@sdsoybean.org.