Farm Progress

The long and the short of it: high oleic soybeans offer immediate gains and long-term demand for Minnesota farmers

Farming is like any other family business. You make day-to-day decisions on what’s best for your business right now. But you are also focused on the long-term, making decisions that will ensure your business’s viability for the next generation.

Minnesota soybean farmers have a marketing opportunity that fits very well with this business acumen.

High oleic soybeans offer farmers premium opportunities to impact their business now, with long-term customer potential to reach 18 million acres, which would make it the fourth-largest grain and oilseed crop in the United States, behind corn, commodity soybeans and wheat.

Premiums average around 45 cents per bushel across the country, but vary depending on location. The premium was one of many factors that attracted Rochelle Krusemark, a soybean farmer and soy checkoff farmer-leader in south central Minnesota.

“I’m really excited to be growing high oleic soybeans,” says Krusemark. “We really feel like it’s time for an ‘oil change,’ so to speak.”

As other states’ success with high oleic soybean grew, so did Krusemark’s confidence in them.

“We looked at the numbers and talked to colleagues who have grown high oleic soybeans in the past,” she says. “We’re very confident that these varieties will perform well on our farm. And if they do, we will definitely continue growing them.”

Krusemark also sees the long-term business potential of high oleic soybeans.

“This isn’t just good for our local economy, but all U.S. soybean farmers,” says Krusemark. “It is essential that we get into new markets, and high oleic soybeans can help us do that.”

Changes in federal policy and consumer attitudes to trans fats have cost soybean farmers more than 4 billion pounds in soybean demand. But high oleic soybeans have zero trans fats, so it is poised to win back that lost market volume without taking away demand for commodity soybean oil, which still meets the needs of many food and industrial customers.

Today, high oleic soybeans are grown on more than 625,000 acres – primarily in Indiana, Ohio and Michigan, and including areas of Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and the Delmarva Peninsula.

With so many states teaming up with Minnesota to grow soybeans, the food industry is taking notice of high oleic soybeans. New locations are being added every year, and current programs are expanding their offerings.

Though high oleic soybeans are a soft identity preserved (IP) product, Krusemark was pleased with the grain handling and delivery options. “High oleic soybeans are going to be crushed here in Fairmont and then further processed and sold through CHS here in Martin County.

“We’re getting the word out and the response has already been really positive,” she says. “I think the sky’s the limit for high oleic soybeans.”

Farmers can find locations requesting high oleic soybeans and their delivery options at SoyInnovation.com.

INNOVATION BEYOND THE BUSHEL

©2017 United Soybean Board

Subscribe to receive top agriculture news
Be informed daily with these free e-newsletters

You May Also Like