SoybeanPremiums.Org a Good Resource for 2011 Seed Selection

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

 An early harvest may provide many Illinois soybean farmers with the opportunity to spend a little more time on seed selection for 2011.  Farmers considering identity-preserved (IP) soybean production may want to browse prospects available in their area at the Web site, www.soybeanpremiums.org.

The site, created by the Illinois Soybean Association (ISA) in 2008, serves as a conduit for matching soybean farmers with premium contract opportunities.  Farmers can review detailed listings posted by soybean buyers, as well as find contact information to follow up with merchandisers.  The site was expanded early last year to include Iowa and Indiana.  Today, the U.S.-only site lists every state offering soybean premiums.

"SoybeanPremiums.org is a good site for exploring potential value-added production opportunities.  It is one-stop shopping to see what soybean varieties are in demand by certain buyers and then contract with a buyer in your area," confirms Mike Cunningham, soybean farmer from Bismarck, Ill., and ISA Demand Committee vice chair.  "Many of these programs can provide farmers with higher revenue than traditional soybeans, and farmers report they really do not see much yield drag anymore with specialty varieties."

Premiums are not always listed on the site due to the competitive nature of programs, but farmers in the past have obtained premiums in the $0.50 to $1.40 per bushel range when meeting specific guidelines.  Qualified farmers must segregate and store specialized soybeans, understand how to meet quality requirements and unique market needs.

"SoybeanPremiums.org is a good starting point for farmers in filtering down IP options within a certain radius of their operations," says Corey Nikkel, vice president of marketing for Schillinger Genetics, West Des Moines, Iowa.  Schillinger advertises on the site, as well as offers non-biotech seed contract opportunities.  "This is the time of year when we see a big spike in interest.  We may not know yet what the 2011 season may hold or all premiums that may be offered, but the earlier harvest gives farmers a chance to spend more time reviewing their options and locking in early seed discounts."

The Illinois Soybean Association (ISA) is the statewide organization for Illinois soybean growers.  The farmers on its board administer soybean checkoff funds to support research, promotions, and educational programs designed to increase demand for Illinois soybeans and administer legislation and membership programs. For more information, visit: www.ilsoy.org.