Dakota Farmer

Find right soybean ‘personality’ for your field

BASF partnership helps ensure soybean variety is a good match for a field’s characteristics.

Sarah McNaughton

October 26, 2022

2 Min Read
Hands holding soybean seed
PLAN ACCORDINGLY: BASF agronomist Marc Hoobler says now is the perfect time to select soybean varieties for the upcoming growing season.Zoran Zeremski/Getty Images

While soybeans are still being harvested on many farms in the region, it’s also time to think about seed selection for next year.

“This time of year is where growers can evaluate some of their decisions they made this year,” says Marc Hoobler, BASF Northern Region agronomy lead. “One thing we’re focused on at BASF is to pick the variety to fit the field and not just to pick a variety based on a trait.”

This unique approach lets producers closely manage based on their field’s needs, rather than trying to fit a field based on a selected trait.

“We believe that soybean varieties have personalities so to speak, and they can tell you where and how they like to be managed and where they should be planted,” Hoobler says.

Ensuring the right variety makes it to the right field can be a difficult task, which is why BASF has partnered with Ag Ingenuity Partners to help identify the characteristics of a field and the soybean variety to match it.

“They’ve developed an algorithm based on different field characteristics like organic matter, CEC [cation exchange capacity], soil wetness index, the slope — and really have used the field characteristics to determine the variety profile index from that information,” he says. “From there, this variety profile is what guides the BASF agronomist on where to place these varieties and then how to manage it.”

A total portfolio

A big piece to BASF’s guidance surrounding soybean variety placements comes from its holistic approach to managing those soybean fields.

“If you think about soybeans specifically, we have the No. 1 soybean crop protection portfolio in the industry,” Hoobler says. “With the No. 1 seed treatment portfolio in the industry, we feel that we have a truly integrated approach to soybean production. It’s not just the seed treatment or the fungicide, it’s all in combination to make sure we’re providing the right recommendations for the field.”

As technology and science drives new products to the market, Hoobler says improved options and varieties are always hitting the market. “There are so many options on the market for growers today,” he says.  

BASF does not only provide crop protection products, but also numerous seed choices. It is one of six seed companies with an active soybean breeding program in the U.S.

With over 160 soybean seed brands sold in the U.S. today, there are no shortages of choice for growers. “This is a great thing,” he says. “We want to continue to help provide choices for growers and earn their trust in our performance on their farm.”

To find out more about the best soybean varieties for your farm, contact your local BASF dealer or agronomist.

About the Author(s)

Sarah McNaughton

Editor, Dakota Farmer, Farm Progress

Sarah McNaughton is a graduate of North Dakota State University, with a bachelor’s degree in agriculture communications, along with minors in animal science and Extension education. She is working on completing her master’s degree in Extension education and youth development, also at NDSU. In her undergraduate program, she discovered a love for the agriculture industry and the people who work in it through her courses and involvement in professional and student organizations.

After graduating college, Sarah worked at KFGO Radio out of Fargo, N.D., as a farm and ranch reporter. She covered agriculture and agribusiness news for North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota. Most recently she was a 4-H Extension agent in Cass County, N.D., teaching, coordinating and facilitating youth programming in various project areas.

She is involved in agriculture in both her professional and personal life, serving on the executive board for North Dakota Agri-Women, and as a member in American Agri-Women, Sigma Alpha Professional Agriculture Sorority Alumni and Professional Women in Agri-business. As a life-long 4-H’er, she is a regular volunteer for North Dakota 4-H programs and events.

In her free time, she is an avid backpacker and hiker, enjoys running with her cattle dog Ripley, and can be found most summer weekends at rodeos around the Midwest.

Sarah is originally from Grand Forks, N.D., and currently resides in Fargo.

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