Soybean Research RFP Reflects Grower Input

Yield is of primary importance to soybean farmers across Minnesota and is a key focus of research funded by the Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council (MSR&PC). This year, research into different types of soil and climate conditions ranging from northern to southern Minnesota is especially important as prices have dropped, climate conditions are changing and the geographical production of soybeans has steadily increased into northern Minnesota. 

The MSR&PC invests millions of dollars in soybean research to address the challenges soybean farmers face regularly. This year’s request for proposals (RFP) for soybean research will look a bit different as the organization addresses specific needs of northern Minnesota’s growers.

During the first week of August, soybean farmers were surveyed at plot field days held by county soybean organizations and the soybean checkoff. These surveys provided valuable feedback for the future of soybean production.

Notable results include:

  • 42% of respondents indicated Iron Deficiency Chlorosis was important
  • 36% of respondents indicated Information on Seed Treatment need and effectiveness was important
  • 24% of respondents indicated Root and Stem disease was important
  • 24% of respondents indicated Soybean Cyst Nematode was important
  • 17% of respondents indicated Row Spacing; Fertility; or Yield (for each) was important

These recommendations, made by soybean farmers themselves, were taken into account by the MSRPC Production Action Team. The team then incorporated those needs into the RFP to request research and technology transfer soybean projects that will continue to meet the needs identified by soybean growers across Minnesota.

“The MSR&PC Production Action Team has members from across the state representing Minnesota soybean farmers. Using farmer expressed needs assessment provides us with the most accurate determination of what questions funded research and extension projects can address to help all Minnesota farmers improve their soybean management and increase yields and profitability,” Paul Meints, MN Soybean Research Programs Manager, said. “Region specific needs are incorporated into the request for proposals (RFP) as well as general statewide needs to assure we are finding answers for growers in newly expanding Minnesota soybean production areas as well as established growing regions.”

The RFP for soybean research projects will be released Oct. 1, primarily to University researchers.

The MSR&PC oversees the investment of soybean checkoff dollars on behalf of the state’s soybean farmers. The council is governed by the rules of a federally mandated checkoff program that requires all soybean producers to pay a fee on the soybeans they sell. Funds are used to promote, educate and develop market opportunities for soybeans.