Minnesota Soybean Business

Mike’s message: Law of averages

May-June 2022

By MSGA President Mike Skaug

Have you ever been driving along and another motorist pulls into your lane and drives slowly? The frustration of following at a slower pace delays everyone.

We know the feeling.

The Low Carbon Fuel Standard that’s being proposed in Minnesota fits this analogy. Biofuels that are renewable from soybeans have been traveling along successfully in our state, beginning in 2005 as a B2 blend rate. We are now going into the fifth year of statewide summer months use of B20. Increasing biofuels blend rates reduces exhaust emissions. The economic and health benefits are realized immediately as well – biodiesel adds nearly $1 to every bushel of soybeans and removes the emissions of nearly-quarter million vehicles from our state’s road each year. Over time, more energy sources are needed and will provide alternatives for consumers. Electric battery-powered vehicles can find their lane to travel by explaining

the cradle-to-grave response to the environment and demonstrate a sustainable energy source that is produced in our nation, like biodiesel did. Our national Renewable Fuels Standard and Renewable Volume Obligation bring stability and credibility to

the renewable fuels market. The industrial production of climate smart energy, like renewables, has a long history of being a credible source for supply and quality to meet demand.

MSGA continues to tell the biodiesel success story to legislators and to both the farming and non-farming public, while bringing those benefits to consumers, economies and our environment.

As we head out into our fields for another planting season, I recall people asking me over the years what farming is all about. My response has been, “It’s a big game of averages.” There isn’t anything that is scheduled or predictable with any accuracy. Many growers say, “If you don’t like the weather in Minnesota, wait fifteen minutes, it will change!”

When spraying crop protection products, waiting for the wind to change, rain to stop or temperature to drop so you can spray out the tank load can be extremely challenging. Especially when you should be attending a family event. Selling enough crop so that you can purchase an input product may come at a time when the grain market is trending lower. No matter what

we buy or sell is not based on a particular time, but rather over a year’s time. It’s been said for generations that a farmer buys what is needed at retail, sells what is produced at wholesale and pays the freight both ways. This business isn’t for the faint of heart, but it fits the faith-hearted person who believes that ultimately it will work out for the best; if we are satisfied, good health and wellbeing will prevail.

On behalf of MSGA, I wish you all a safe, healthy and above-average growing season in 2022.


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