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Soy insect spray a crowd favorite

Slideshow: Team InsectiSoy wins the People’s Choice Award for soy-based products at Purdue’s Student Soybean Innovation Competition.

8 Slides

Attendees boosted Team InsectiSoy to the top of their favorite soy-based products at Purdue’s 2024 Student Soybean Innovation Competition. The soy-based insect spray caught the attention of over 300 people who attended the event to see the creativity that Purdue students had to share.

While Team SoySilk, Team SoyBox and Team Green Eggs, No Ham! took the top three places at the event hosted by the Indiana Soybean Alliance, Team InsectiSoy won the People’s Choice Award. Team members Sarah Juffer, Charles Sebright and Josh Stephenson developed an insect repellent that they say is safe for people and pets. The trio took home a $500 prize for their award.

InsectiSoy is intended to be sprayed around your house, in cracks in the foundation or anywhere where an insect may enter. The team explains that the product irritates insects and deters them from entering. The idea spawned from a cockroach infestation where one of the team members was shocked by the ingredients listed in the repellents he was using to manage the problem. Team InsectiSoy says the product also will be less expensive than typical repellents.

Here is a look at some of the other teams who showcased their products at the event:

Soylish Nails. Noticing the damage caused by fake nails, this team created a soy-based fingernail strip that helps grow and strengthen nails. Creators include Lily Esterline, Kaylin Larson and Mallory Zobel.

Related:Soy-based baby wipes a winning product

Ambrosia Bar. While it looks like a chocolate bar, this soy-based nutrition bar is packed with protein and energy. Team members include Emmanuel Alagbe, Brooklin Toombs and Emily Muntean.

SoyAid. For the first time, soybeans are incorporated into a bandage product through these soy-based bandages that promote healing. Creators include Danae Youngstedt, Jerry Chen and Jihee Kim.

Soyper. Although this paper is not for writing, the soybean paper created by Soohyun Kim, AJ DiAndreth, Lauren Schroeder and Lauren Gregg can be used as a packaging alternative.

Gly-Soy. These soy-based test strips provide an inexpensive option for glucose testing in diabetics. Creators Isaac Bailey and Thomas Sheeley wanted to make a low-tech solution for testing meters than can be difficult for some to afford.

Nutrisoy. This organic soy-based fertilizer was developed to add live bacteria to the soil that can work to pull in nutrients, potentially decreasing the need for inorganic fertilizers. Team members include Alison Fung and Madeline Tiedt.

Soyshine. Team members Ekene Megwa, Giovanni Stabile, Drake Strait and Alexis Walker created and tested 10 formulations for a soybean substitute for wax applied to fruits and vegetables sold in stores.

Browse through the slideshow to find more information about these products. Check out this earlier story to learn about the rest of the products showcased at the event.

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About the Author(s)

Allison Lund

Indiana Prairie Farmer Senior Editor, Farm Progress

Allison Lund worked as a staff writer for Indiana Prairie Farmer before becoming editor in 2024. She graduated from Purdue University with a major in agricultural communications and a minor in crop science. She served as president of Purdue’s Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow chapter. In 2022, she received the American FFA Degree. 

Lund grew up on a cash grain farm in south-central Wisconsin, where the primary crops were corn, soybeans, wheat and alfalfa. Her family also raised chewing tobacco and Hereford cattle. She spent most of her time helping with the tobacco crop in the summer and raising Boer goats for FFA projects. She lives near Winamac, Ind.

Tom J. Bechman

Midwest Crops Editor, Farm Progress

Tom J. Bechman became the Midwest Crops editor at Farm Progress in 2024 after serving as editor of Indiana Prairie Farmer for 23 years. He joined Farm Progress in 1981 as a field editor, first writing stories to help farmers adjust to a difficult harvest after a tough weather year. His goal today is the same — writing stories that help farmers adjust to a changing environment in a profitable manner.

Bechman knows about Indiana agriculture because he grew up on a small dairy farm and worked with young farmers as a vocational agriculture teacher and FFA advisor before joining Farm Progress. He works closely with Purdue University specialists, Indiana Farm Bureau and commodity groups to cover cutting-edge issues affecting farmers. He specializes in writing crop stories with a focus on obtaining the highest and most economical yields possible.

Tom and his wife, Carla, have four children: Allison, Ashley, Daniel and Kayla, plus eight grandchildren. They raise produce for the food pantry and house 4-H animals for the grandkids on their small acreage near Franklin, Ind.

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