Naeve says many factors go into producing a high yield, high quality soybean crop. It first requires the right environment.
Then, farmers need to make nearly all the right decisions including field management practices, timely planting and soil fertility options. It also requires choosing the right seed variety, proper row spacing and
seed populations. Then there are the season-long pest management practices to control weeds, insects and diseases.
Nearly all of the past and current MSR&PC supported research revolves around increasing and protecting yields. In fact,
increasing yields is one of Minnesota Soybean’s priority issues. Projects being undertaken in the coming year include cultural practices such as the effects of corn management on subsequent soybean yields, effects
of tile drainage on soybean yields, research into disease and soybean cyst nematode management. Genetics, genomics and breeding programs are also part of the research picture formed with profitability in mind. Those
projects will be conducted by researchers at the University of Minnesota, North Dakota State University and elsewhere.
“I’ve only grown soybeans since 1998. We didn’t have things like soybean aphids even eight years ago, but now we’ve got that
pest,” LeBlanc added. “At first you’re blindsided. You don’t know when to spray or what to spray with. That’s where research comes in.”
“Soybean yields have been increasing over time,” Naeve said, “at about onethird of a bushel per year. Unfortunately that’s not
enough to meet the world-wide demand. We need to find a way to step that up and improve the rate of yield increase.”
It’s also important that the information gathered from these projects gets into the hands of producers who could implement them
on their farms