Council directors review 2021 research proposals

When the calendar hits late January, farmer leaders from the Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council (MSR&PC) gather to review checkoff-funded research proposals for the upcoming year. For the first time, this year’s meeting was held virtually, but the objective stayed the same. As in years past, the focus of the projects was broken into three core areas: pest management, soybean breeding and genetics and other agronomy.

The group had presenters come into the meeting to discuss the importance of their proposal, as they wanted to have a better understanding of the proposed projects to help make educated decisions on which proposals they should fund.

Understanding each proposal’s importance across the state of Minnesota, the farmer leaders had to factor in the diverse production needs of growers from Wannaska to Wabasha.

“The proposals, this year or any other year, are vital to farmers’ success on their farm,” Council Director Kris Folland said. “Take, for instance, the study of soybean cyst nematodes. As a Council, we need to narrow down our choices to be able to find projects that will effectively increase profitability for Minnesota farmers. And how do we do that? We look for the best proposals to help eliminate or control threats to our farming operations.”

With farmer leadership across the state, each proposal held different values of importance to each area; however, the group worked together on making a unified decision.

The group narrowed down which proposals the Council should fund and took consideration of input from their area. After much discussion, the group decided to fund most of the projects presented; however, they had to cut a few due to budget constrictions.

“I feel confident of the proposals the farmer leaders decided to fund,” MSR&PC Director of Research David Kee said. “They are always looking for new and innovative ways to keep the needle moving forward and progressing soybean farming as a whole.”

Last year, the Council sponsored 14 research projects. All 15 directors on the Council will gather this spring to finalize and formally approve the 2021 research proposals.

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