A big uncertainty for South Dakota soybean growers is weather, which affects them in more ways than one. It hit most eastern South Dakota farmers hard last year in the form of severe drought. They were hit again, if indirectly, when a tropical storm clobbered southern Louisiana, setting back grain handling at the Port of New Orleans. “The hurricane really damaged one of the Cargill plants,” said Todd Hanten, a South Dakota farmer and board member for the South Dakota Soybean Research and Promotion Council.
There’s export demand for sustainable U.S. soybeans in Northeast Asia, which includes Japan and Korea. Rosalind Leeck, the U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC) director for that region, calls Japanese and Korean demand for U.S. soybeans “relatively stable,” despite the pandemic.
The number of acres planted to high oleic soybeans is growing. And although that growth has been slow to this point, an industry spokesman says that might change. There were 600,000 acres of high oleic soybeans grown in the U.S. in 2021, according to John Jansen, vice president of partnerships at the United Soybean Board.
The South Dakota Soybean Checkoff is partnering with Goodyear Tire to donate soy-based tires to 50 South Dakota sheriff’s departments, as well as to the South Dakota Highway Patrol and other state agencies. The partnership underscores the tire company’s relationship with farmers and with first responders, according to Carly Bishop, government account manager for Goodyear Tire.
Nationwide, soybean checkoff programs, including the South Dakota Soybean Research and Promotion Council (SDSRPC) are working to discover new uses for soybeans to help increase demand and deliver strong ROI for farmers. One great example is the application of PoreShield on the new construction on Marion Road in Sioux Falls, SD.
Soybean markets have rebounded tremendously over the first half of 2021 after an extended period that was hampered by any number of factors, from international trade conflicts to African swine fever in China to economic disruptions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.