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Ways to keep your investment safe

INSIDE: Learning to Lead

Fostering Innovation Q & A with MSR&PC

MAYChair - JUNEPaul - 2015 Simonsen - Soybean Business




Minnesota Soybean Growers Association Officers and ASA Directors: OFFICERS

Dan Brandt Eyota, MN Olmsted/S. Wabasha Counties

Bruce Nelsen Rose Creek, MN Mower County

Mark Brown St. James, MN Watonwan County

Keith Nelsen Westbrook, MN Cottonwood County

Steve Brusven Cottonwood, MN Yellow Medicine County

Robert Nelsen Westbrook, MN Murray County

Ron Bunjer Arco, MN Lincoln County

Ron Obermoller Brewster, MN Nobles County

Cecil Deschene Argyle, MN Marshall County

Mike O’Leary Danvers, MN Swift County

Brian Fruechte Verdi, MN Lincoln County

Mike Petefish Claremont, MN, Dodge County

George Goblish Vesta, MN Redwood County

Tom Grundman Osakis, MN Douglas County

Ray Hewitt Le Sueur, MN Scott/Le Sueur Counties

Bill Gordon Worthington, MN Nobles County

Corey Hanson Gary, MN Norman County

Ian Sandager Hills, MN Rock County

Lance Peterson Underwood, MN Ottertail County

Jeremy Hanson Nerstand, MN Dakota/Rice Counties

Bruce Schmoll Claremont, MN Dodge County

Joel Schreurs Tyler, MN Lincoln County

Ed Hegland Appleton, MN Lac Qui Parle County

Joel Schreurs Tyler, MN Lincoln County

Lawrence Sukalski Fairmont, MN Martin County

Christopher Hill Brewster, MN Jackson County

Mike Skaug Beltrami, MN Polk County

Brad Hovel Cannon Falls, MN Goodhue/N. Wabasha Counties

Cal Spronk Edgerton, MN Pipestone County

Ryan Wondercheck Lamberton, MN Redwood County

Steve Hulke Courtland, MN Nicollet/Sibley Counties

Sheldon Stevermer Wells, MN Faribault County

Aaron Yaggie Thief River Falls, MN Pennington/ Red Lake Counties

Gary Joachim Owatonna, MN Steele County

Doug Toreen Bird Island, MN Renville County


Kurt Krueger Rothsay, MN Clay/Wilkin Counties

Robert Wayne Ellendale, MN Freeborn County

Jim Kukowski Strathcona, MN Roseau/Lake of the Woods Counties

Matt Widboom Worthington, MN Nobles County

George Goblish President Vesta, MN Redwood County Paul Freeman Vice President Starbuck, MN Pope County Cole Trebesch Treasurer Springfield, MN Brown County Theresia Gillie Secretary Hallock, MN Kittson County



Kevin Amiot Red Lake Falls, MN Pennington/ Red Lake Counties Nick Bjornberg Willmar, MN Kandiyohi County Dana Blume Elbow Lake, MN Ottertail/Grant Counties

Bob Lindemann Brownton, MN McLeod County Larry Muff New Richland, MN Waseca County

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Earl Ziegler Good Thunder, MN Blue Earth County Karolyn Zurn Calloway, MN Becker/Mahnomen Counties

B U S I N E S S EDITORIAL STAFF: Editor in Chief Doug Monson Communications Manager Minnesota Soybean 151 Saint Andrews Court Suite 710, Mankato, MN 56001 888-896-9678

Contributing Writers Dan Lemke Cathy Riley Shawna Aakre Sara Larson Kristeena Patsche

Art Director

Eric Melhorn Funkiture, Inc. CIRCULATION: Soybean Business is published six times a year on behalf of Minnesota Soybean. Comments and suggestions can be submitted to: Minnesota Soybean Growers Association, 151 Saint Andrews Court, Suite 710, Mankato, MN 56001. ADVERTISING For advertising information, contact Veronica Bruckhoff, Minnesota Soybean, 888-896-9678 or veronica@mnsoybean. com. Advertising space reservations can be made by the 15th day of the month prior to publication. In consideration of the acceptance of the advertisement, the agency and the advertiser must, in respect of the contents of the advertisement, indemnify and save the publisher harmless against any expense arising from claims or actions against the publisher because of the publication of the content of the advertisement. Advertisements within this publication contain the opinions and information of the advertisers and do not necessarily reflect the opinions or views of the Minnesota Soybean organizations or affiliated groups.



Occupied or not, farm sites can be targets for theft. Whether it is fuel, tools, grain or even livestock, it’s never been more important to secure your investments.


Q & A with MSR&PC Chairman Paul Simonsen Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council Chairman Paul Simonsen has seen a lot of accomplishments in his two years as chairman.

Learning to Lead The face of agriculture is aging, placing increased importance on the identification and development of the next generation of leaders. An important program is helping to equip new industry leaders.

p. 6 p. 12

What You Say—What They Hear The use of crop protection products is second nature to farmers. Understanding the point of view of non-farmers can help foster a more constructive dialog.

p. 14

Fostering Innovation New uses for soybean products don’t just happen; they’re often the result of years of research and development. The soybean checkoff supports soybean-based innovations designed to add value.

p. 16

Legislative Work Doesn’t End When Session Ends Summer events provide the perfect opportunity for farmers to meet with legislators and show them a bit more about how farmers farm.

Myth Busted Once the grain is in the bin, your job isn’t over. In fact, with today’s larger grain storage and handling systems, managing your grain is more important than ever.

p. 24 p. 27


Protecting farm assets is becoming trickier and more vital. Find out what experts recommend for keeping your farm safe.

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Letter from the President

The Next Step

Wow. Two years. You’d think two years is a good amount of time, but when you commit to an organization like the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association and fully give your time and energy on behalf of all Minnesota soybean farmers, well, two years as MSGA President isn’t all that long. Looking back, I’m reminded why time has passed quickly. One of MSGA’s successes was the 2014 implementation of B10. Your MSGA directors, our lobbyists and our staff worked with Minnesota Biodiesel Council and other supporters and were able to successfully fend off challenges by groups opposing the move to B10. All of Minnesota should be proud of biodiesel. For farmers, biodiesel adds .73 to every bushel of soybeans sold. For Minnesotans, the use of the current biodiesel blends is equal to removing 128,000 vehicles from our roads each year. In 2014, a group of MSGA directors went to Washington, D.C., and spoke to the Surface Transportation Board about the struggles of shipping grain. Their impromptu appearance brought the issue to the national forefront. More recently, MSGA has been committed to being a voice on Gov. Mark Dayton’s buffers initiative. Our directors and our environmental lawyer have been vocal at his public meetings and vocal in the media. We have worked with our ag partners, and we continue to work to have a seat at the table. In the last year, we have also developed a strategic plan for MSGA. By creating this plan we hope to increase Minnesota Soybean’s influence, visibility and effectiveness in public policy arenas, position Minnesota soybean as the definitive source of soybean information for Minnesota and identify and develop the next generation of soybean leaders. MSGA membership has hit an all-time high. Thank you to everyone who has helped Minnesota became the largest soybean association in the nation. What does this mean for Minnesota soybean farmers? Well, you’ve heard the saying “strength in numbers,” right? We boast more than 4,000 members, and every time we go to St. Paul on your behalf, we have strength in numbers. We also held several educational meetings throughout Minnesota, and for the first-time a webinar, which covered the 2014 Farm Bill and reached more than 1,800 participants. We’ve seen the substantial growth with MN Ag EXPO, our annual convention held in conjunction with the Minnesota Corn Growers. I look at all these successes and know I am missing many, many more. One thing I do know is the future of MSGA is bright. I encourage young farmers to get involved and provide leadership. While my tenure as MSGA president ends in June, my involvement in soybean leadership will continue as a director for the American Soybean Association. Thank you for your support the past two years. And thank you for being an MSGA member. George Goblish President, MSGA

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Want To Make Sure You’re Heard By Lawmakers?

Join The Minnesota Soybean Growers Association. Let’s be honest, fewer and fewer people know what farmers do to provide safe, affordable food. This includes the decision makers in St. Paul and Washington, D.C. Let the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association be your voice. With over 4,100 members, they’ll be your voice to inform lawmakers about what Minnesota soybean farmers are already doing to grow food, fuel and fiber while protecting the land and water that we all love and share. To learn more about the benefits of MSGA membership, call us at 888-896-9678 or visit us at

MAY - JUNE - 2015 - Soybean Business



Time well served Outgoing MSR&PC Chairman Simonsen proud of work with ag commodities

Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council Chairman Paul Simonsen has seen a lot of accomplishments in his two years as chairman. The Fairfax, Minn., farmer has overseen plenty of change during that period, whether it be in the growth of foreign markets, to the changing of the guard with the University of Minnesota’s soybean breeder, to the development of a strategic plan. Simonsen took some time out of his schedule this spring as he prepared his planter to talk a little more about his time as chairmain of MSR&PC. What are some of the things you’ve accomplished as Chairman? Well, we, and I say we because this takes the efforts of all our directors and our staff, have accomplished a lot in the past two years. Some of the things I am most proud of are our revised strategic plan, our work with our foreign markets, which has included the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with Taiwan to purchase U.S. soybeans and corn, our promotion of 10 percent biodiesel, and our funding of the soybean breeder position at the University of Minnesota. Why was the Memorandum of Understanding with Taiwan so important? Well, it was a big deal. The Governor was there, representatives from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture and the Corn Growers were there along with some pretty high ranking officials from Taiwan. There was 6 - Soybean Business - MAY - JUNE - 2015

By Doug Monson

a lot of media coverage and many cameras. Signing the memorandum wasn’t that difficult, but I had to get up and say a few words and the Governor said a few things and then the Taiwanese officials did. What’s important to note is that not all of the soybeans they buy would be coming from Minnesota. Taiwan does this more as a show thing to commit to buying a certain amount of soybeans and corn from the United States. They had done this before in Illinois, and when we were over there we invited them to come over and do it in Minnesota. So they came over the next summer and did. They pride themselves in buying U.S. products and being very friendly to the U.S. You mentioned a strategic plan. How does this benefit Minnesota soybean farmers? The strategic plan is important because it allows us to better invest farmers’ soybean checkoff dollars into areas such as market development, research, new uses, environmental stewardship, education and marketing communication efforts. All of these investments are made to help make soybeans more profitable. As directors, we’ve worked hard to develop this new strategic plan, which has better aligned us with our mission. But the strategic plan is only a map or a guide to help us achieve our goals. Without all of my fellow directors caring about the success of Minnesota soybean farming, and without an excellent staff to help us reach

our goals, we couldn’t be successful investing checkoff dollars. Dr. Aaron Lorenz recently took over as the University of Minnesota soybean breeder. MSR&PC helped fund the new breeder’s position. Why invest soybean checkoff money into such an endeavor? Not every state has a soybean breeder. That kind of sets us apart from the other states. If we have our own soybean breeder, they realize where we are and they know our climate a lot better than the bigger companies. And of course, he does food-grade varieties, which benefits our organic farmers as well. And then you have to consider that our varieties have to be a shorter season than most of the United States. We need good varieties for our climate. We also have our northern soybean counties, and it’s especially true we need varieties for that climate that benefit our northern growers. So having our own breeder is crucial to growing new varieties throughout our state. You served as the Minnesota Corn Growers Association President in 1993 and had a lot of success with helping start E85 in Minnesota after your term as MCGA President. What led you to MSR&PC? Well, I served on the Corn Growers for about seven or eight years, and then I represented the Corn Growers

during the E85 initiative. After that, I took about 10 years off before someone approached me about running for the Council. From my time with Corn, I’d hear things were done a little differently at Soybean, so I said, “I’ll go and find out for myself.” I came more to see what the organization was like. I had no intent to run for office, and I think at the end of my first year someone nominated me for office and I declined. Eventually I took on secretary or treasurer thinking I could just keep a low profile. So much for that, but you never know where you’re going to go, I guess. I’m definitely proud to have served the Council and glad I did find out for myself how important the checkoff is to soybean farmers. What’s the next chapter hold for you? Well, after June when my term as president is done, I’ll have another year remaining on my term with the Council. After that, I’m done. I think I have done my duty with ag commodity groups. You never want it set in stone, but that’s the way it is right now, that’s the way I’ve thought about it all along, and I don’t see me changing my mind. There are good people out here. You just have to knock them off center and get them to see what needs to be done and how to be involved.

Unleash the leader within

COMING SOON: The Minnesota Soybean Leadership Program

Brought to you by the Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council and the soybean checkoff. MAY - JUNE - 2015 - Soybean Business - 7

Farm Security: The human threat Protecting remote sites a growing challenge

In March, four southern Minnesota men were arrested for stealing 22 head of cattle, fuel, a truck and trailer from a rural Watonwan County farm. In January, Blue Earth County authorities told farmers to be on the lookout for a man in a pickup caught backing up to a remote bin site in an attempt to steal grain. Last fall, vandals did well over $500,000 worth of damage to buildings and farm equipment in Blue Earth County in a one-night spree that involved driving tractors into buildings, rolling a truck into a river and flipping a grain cart into a ditch. And most recently, $70,000 worth of bull semen was stolen from a barn in Mower County. The thief simply took a canister containing vials of bull semen from an unlocked barn/milking parlor. These disturbing behaviors are being played out with greater frequency across rural Minnesota. Many farmers operate farms with multiple locations and remote building sites, some of which are uninhabited. Those can be prime targets for thieves. “We are seeing more burglaries at off-site farm locations,” says Blue Earth County Deputy Rich Murry. Easy targets Murry says thieves not only target farms for tools and equipment, but even wiring can be sold for scrap. John McGuire with TDX Tech agrees with Murry’s assessment. McGuire works with farmers and businesses across the farm belt to put security measures in place. McGuire recounts one instance where thieves stole everything inside a rural home, including the refrigerator. Two weeks later, the house was hit again with thieves stealing the only piece of furniture that had been replaced—a brand new bed.

“A lot of guys are trying to figure out how to protect their stuff,” McGuire says. “That includes their fuel, but also tools and even their livestock.” McGuire works with farmers primarily on video surveillance systems. He says video monitoring is becoming increasingly popular for farm security, but also for herd management and biosecurity. Prices and quality have improved, making them a viable option for many farms. Not every farm site in rural Minnesota is occupied, but it’s probably still being used for some farming purpose. “Maybe Mom and Dad used to live on the main farm place but now they live in town or go south for the winter. The fuel, tools and equipment are still stored there but now there’s nobody around,” McGuire says. Given 15 to 20 minutes in a farmer’s shed, McGuire says thieves could easily steal $20,000 worth of tools. “Most of the time the concern is that there are people wandering around on the farm that shouldn’t be there,” McGuire says. In one case near Rochester, McGuire says a farmer went to an uninhabited site to install a remote camera system and found someone wandering around the farm. The stranger left after being confronted by the farmer. The man was later arrested for stealing from area farms. Video Security McGuire says a lot of video monitoring systems can tie into a digital video recorder, which can be connected to the internet, giving farmers access to the images on their computer, smart phone or other mobile device. While the quality and affordability of systems have improved, McGuire says getting license plate numbers of vehicles coming in and out of farm sites is still the number one thing a system can provide. He also says motion activation sensors to trigger cameras help gather images of people (continued on page 10)

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By Dan Lemke

TIPS FOR SECURING YOUR FARM Keep your property well lit; use motion-sensor lights as well. If you have an offsite property, make sure it looks used. Worn paths to bins or buildings are a sign to thieves that someone may return. Visit your offsite property often. Besides working to wear down paths, visiting your site lets you observe your surroundings. Invest in quality locks for all your buildings. Use a video recording system to capture license plates entering and leaving the property. Use motion-sensor cameras to capture people entering doors. Take inventory. If a burglary does occur, pictures and serial numbers will help identify your property. When traveling, have a neighbor or worker check your farm and any offsite properties. On that same note, don’t tweet or post on Facebook you are on vacation or away for an extended period of time. Sadly, people we know or friends of people we know don’t always have our best interest in mind. Know who is working for you. While you may vet your employees, contractors may not do the same for their employees. Be careful with the information you share. Be vigilant. If you see someone lurking around your property or your neighbors, call the authorities. If it appears someone has broken into your property, call the authorities and wait for them to check the scene. In the end, you can replace your property, but not your life. If you must leave machinery at an unoccupied site, take the keys with you, lock cab doors. Machinery left outdoors should be parked in a well-lit area or directly beneath a yard light.

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Remote video cameras can be incorporated into herd management by monitoring animals without disrupting them. (Photo courtesy TDX Tech) (continued from page 8)

walking through doors. Video monitoring systems are available at many different levels depending upon the quality, number of cameras and the amount of data being gathered. McGuire says the average system ends up costing between $1,500 and $2,500.

can also help with biosecurity and proper animal management. Reviewing procedures to make sure proper protocol is followed can help prevent disease and animal health issues. It can also help farmers understand what happened if problems do arise.

“A lot of guys are trying to figure out how to protect their stuff,” McGuire says. “That includes their fuel, but also tools and even their livestock.” John McGuire with TDX Tech

Biosecurity and herd management Farm security involves more than just protecting grain, tools and equipment from theft or damage. For livestock producers, there’s the added level of biosecurity and herd management. McGuire says some farmers use remote monitoring systems to check on herd health, particularly during calving, lambing or farrowing. Knowing when and if a birthing mother needs help can save both mom and babies without causing additional stress to the animals. Systems 10--Soybean SoybeanBusiness Business--MAY MAY--JUNE JUNE--2015 2015 10

“A lot of it is about knowledge,” McGuire adds. “Who is going where and doing what? Are employees doing it right? Is there someone in there that shouldn’t be?” Take precautions Deputy Murry says as with home security, it’s important that farmers take precautions to ensure the safety of their farm sites. Basics like good lighting and solid locks are important to protecting valuable tools and equipment.

Video monitoring can also put eyes on farm buildings to track who is coming and going. (Photo courtesy TDX Tech)

“Number one is to know what you have,” adds Murry. “Keep an inventory, take pictures, write down serial numbers or other ways to identify what you have.” Murry says it can be difficult to return recovered stolen property if there is no way to identify where it came from. That’s why it’s important for farmers to document their belongings with an inventory, photos or even video. Beyond identifying tools, it’s also key that people in rural areas are aware of what’s going on around them. “Be a good neighbor. If people see things that appear out of place, let us know,” Murry says. “We’d much rather get a false call than to have someone become a victim and then have us try to return stolen property.” McGuire is realistic in is assessment of this growing trend. “Unfortunately, thieves are getting more sophisticated in figuring out that there can be easy ways to steal stuff from farms,” he says. “And it doesn’t take long. Thieves can also be quite brazen. In April, a man was arrested for stealing about $5,000 worth of soybeans from a farm in Le Sueur County. Authorities say the man fashioned a makeshift loading spout onto the side of the bin, then cut a hole in the wall with a torch, allowing the beans to flow into a grain truck waiting below. He is also

suspected of doing the same thing on another farm in Blue Earth County. The unoccupied Le Sueur County site was used solely for grain storage.

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Learning to Lead with Others Minnesota ASA DuPont Young Leaders grateful for leadership training program

Ryan and Wendy Wondercheck (center) were honored for their participation in the ASA DuPont Young Leader program. To their left is ASA President Wade Cowan and to their right is Russ Sanders, Food & Industry Markets Director, DuPont Pioneer.

By Sara Larson The average age of the American farmer is 57 and it doesn’t look like that age will be dropping anytime soon. Not only is agriculture aging, the industry is in need of young individuals who have the drive and determination to be a leader. As part of developing new leaders, the American Soybean Association, along with DuPont, offers a Young Leader Program. This year, Minnesota had two parties selected to go through the leadership training program: Redwood County Soybean members, Ryan and Wendy Wondercheck and Pennington/Red Lake County Soybean member, Aaron Yaggie. The Wonderchecks from Lamberton, Minn., raise corn and soybeans in addition to operating their crop insurance and Pioneer seed businesses, not to mention raising two kids, Paige, 6 and Isaac, 3. Yaggie grew up on a fourth generation farm near Thief River Falls, Minn., where he and his family grow wheat, barley, soybeans, sugar beets and corn. For the Wonderchecks and Yaggie, being involved in agriculture and being a leader is something that has been second nature for them. “I have always been involved in various agriculture 12 - Soybean Business - MAY - JUNE - 2015

activities,” Ryan Wondercheck says. “I think this is an excellent way to stay in touch with the industry and an opportunity to hear about the challenges agriculture is facing.” Yaggie sees the program as a way to expand his horizons. “I am always looking for new opportunities to learn and improve myself and our business,” he says. “This seemed like an excellent way to gain information and get to know other farmers who face similar challenges in an increasingly competitive global market.” The program has two phases, the first week in Johnston, Iowa, and a few months later a second week at Commodity Classic. During these sessions, participants have the chance to meet young leaders from across the country. This year, individuals were participating from 23 different states and Canada. In addition to attending the two sessions, top participants are selected to participate in a third class that includes spending a few days in Washington, D.C., talking to legislators. When asked if the program was worth the time and juggling of family and business commitments, the Wonderchecks admit it can be a little hectic.

(continued on page 13)

(continued from page 12)

“For everything you get out of a one week timeframe, it is certainly worth it,” Wendy Wondercheck says. Ryan Wondercheck agrees with his wife’s assessment. “Having a business and kids can make it difficult to leave for the week, but the time, skills and friendships gained from the program are worth the time,” he says. Wendy Wondercheck says the program offers participants a chance to be better farmers, but also shows them how to be better advocates. Yaggie says networking has been a vital piece to the program. “The relationships you build in this program are essential and are such a benefit of going through the Young Leaders Program,” He says. Young Leader Program alumnus Bob Worth says the program has been an essential piece to growing leaders for the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association. Minnesota ASA DuPont Young Leaders spend a year on MSGA’s board

of directors, and some have gone on to become their county representatives with MSGA or at-large selections to the board. “The program was a great experience to grow in your personal skills but also to establish friendships with farmers just like you all over the country,” he says. “A lot of them are in very similar situations as you are, whether it be family, farm or just personal experiences. It is nice to meet people who have a similar mindset.” Both the Wonderchecks and Yaggie agree that the program has been a great experience, one that has made them better leaders, better farmers and more able to make a positive impact in agriculture. “We have spent hours and hours advocating for our own industries,” Ryan Wondercheck says. “We need to come together and not just be corn, soybean, beef, dairy, pork but come together and be one agriculture group and be on the same team promoting each other.”

SUPPORTING SOY INNOVATION, FROM ONE HARVEST TO THE NEXT Everything we do at CHS, we do to help you succeed. That’s why we provide 24/7 soybean receiving at our Minnesota processing plants. Why we continue to expand our soybean business, adding value to your beans and connecting you to global consumers. And why we proudly invest in scholarships, sponsorships and programs to build next generation leaders and vibrant communities.

Call us at 800-642-0046 or visit

© 2015 CHS Inc.

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2/14/15 10:1

“What you say...

...what they hear� By Shawna Aakre

As farmers, your understanding of pesticides is intricate. But for consumers, what pesticides are and what they do are confusing. The confusion especially comes to light when media and the agriculture industry are talking about pesticides, which has become evident as the findings of a U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) study show there is a general lack of knowledge regarding pesticide use. Last issue, we highlighted the overall findings of the USRFA study on consumer attitudes toward chemical use on the farm. This issue, we’re taking a closer look at how we talk about pesticides. It is important to understand how to talk about pesticides carefully to help facilitate consumer understanding and the value of pesticides. Even though there seems to be little discussion about pesticides, the study shows that on social settings, including social media, the mention of toxicity of pesticides brings fear to the minds of Americans. Fortunately, the study found that there are some positives on pesticides. Americans are pleased to see the improvements made throughout the years with technology, especially reducing the use of pesticides.

By Dan Lemke 14 - Soybean Business - MAY - JUNE - 2015

When you say “pesticides” to explain pest management, they hear “we’re killin’ stuff ” When we say “bugs and weeds attack plants. Pesticides help farmers protect their plants from attacks, and allow them to keep plants healthy and protect your food,” we present our practices in a more positive light, one that sparks understanding and positive emotions among consumers. Another option would be “GPS and computer-enabled tractors and farm equipment ensure that farmers apply pesticides and fertilizers as precisely as possible, avoiding overuse.” — advances in farming practices are well-accepted when linked with less inputs and described simply.

When you say “precise” they say, “what the …?” Consumers see “precise” negatively and get confused because it’s too technical — Use “right amount at the right time” instead — consumers understand simple language and believe the industry is doing the right thing with pesticide use

A FEW STATS: 22% of Consumer Food Connectors (CFCs, people who advocate on food) believe the industry is doing the right thing in regard to use of Pesticides TO COMPARE: l

21% agree the industry doing right thing with insecticide use


19% agree the industry doing right thing with herbicide use


22% agree the industry doing right thing with fungicide use


23% agree the industry doing right thing with fertilizer use

When you say “resistance” they hear “keeping the man down” Well, not exactly. When they hear words like “harm,” “toxic” and “resistance,” consumers have negative emotions. These words elicit fear — When you say “healthy,” “safety,” “natural,” “care” and “not overuse,” they hear “farmers get it, they are good stewards of our land and food.” — consumers like these words and see farmers’ actions positively when these words are used to describe practices.

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Fostering Innovation By Dan Lemke

Checkoff supports efforts to create ag-based innovations

Minnesota has long been a leader in agricultural production and innovation. That historic leadership may well hold the key to its economic future. The soybean checkoff supports research, market development, environmental stewardship, education, communications and new uses. For more than 25 years, the Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council has partnered in efforts to develop innovative new uses for soybeans and soy processing coproducts through the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute. AURI is a nonprofit corporation, created by the state legislature to develop innovative and value-added uses for Minnesota agricultural products through applied research and product development. This includes such diverse uses as renewable energy, food products, coproduct utilization and bio-based products. With labs in Crookston, Marshall and Waseca, AURI provides Minnesota businesses and entrepreneurs with access to unique resources. “The biggest thing AURI offers is the expertise of their scientists and project managers,” says Ron Obermoller, a farmer from Brewster, Minnesota Soybean Growers Association director and current chair of the AURI board 16 - Soybean Business - MAY - JUNE - 2015

of directors. “AURI supports rural growth by creating jobs and economic development.” From 2004 to 2012, AURI reports projects they have supported resulted in new capital investments of over $62 million, more than 50 new ag-based products developed and 40 technologies developed or enhanced. Over the past two decades, the MSR&PC has invested funds in specific projects to create innovative uses for soybeans and soybean coproducts in an effort to capture as much value as possible. Those projects include the development of biodiesel, which was being researched by organizations like AURI, the University of Minnesota and the U.S. Bureau of Mines back in the late 1980s. Other successful efforts include the development of soy-based plastics for home and industrial uses. Several recent projects are showing strong potential for getting soybean products into new and high-value applications. Bio-Based Fire Retardant EarthClean Corporation of South St. Paul has developed a bio-based water enhancer called TetraKO that can be pumped through standard fire equipment to help suppress fires. Once

applied and exposed to heat, TetraKO converts to steam, reducing risk to firefighter exposure to heat, flames and toxic fumes. Tests have shown the product, which contains agricultural components, is more effective than plain water, plus it is biodegradable and non-toxic to water, fish, plants and animals. Tests are underway to determine if the bio-based retardant could be certified for use by the U.S. Forest Service in wildfire applications. Additional work is being done to determine applications for the product in animal feed. The MSR&PC has invested $50,000 in soybean checkoff in this overall $479,000 project. Glycerin Anti-Freeze Minnesota’s biodiesel plants produce over 60 million gallons of biodiesel each year. They also produce glycerin, which is a thick liquid coproduct of biodiesel manufacturing that has limited value in its crude form. Developing new, value-added uses for glycerin would improve profitability of the state’s biodiesel plants and offer another revenue stream for soybeans.

The MSR&PC and AURI are working with a nationally recognized company here in Minnesota to develop and evaluate new product opportunities from glycerin, including using it as a “green” anti-freeze in applications not thought of before. This project is still in the exploration phase so no soybean checkoff dollars have been invested at this point. Biobased Bale Net Wrap This project proposes to address a problem identified by the livestock industry involving plastic net wrap used in forage bales. When feeding or grinding bales wrapped with net wrap, it is often not efficient for operators to remove the wrap prior to feeding. This poses a problem, particularly in ruminant animals not able to digest the plastic materials used in the wrap. The purpose of this project is to research and develop a plastic material composition using soypolyolefin profiles with at least 20-25 percent renewable, bio-based content. This material will be used in the production of bale net wrap with the goal of increased biodegradability. Industry experts are currently being consulted to gain additional insight into potential biobased polymer

solutions. Information is also being gathered on manufacturing specs from net wrap suppliers to better understand the manufacturing processes for bale net wrap. Beginning in March 2015, another literature review will be conducted focused on intellectual property of unstable polymers that have potential solutions for partial rumen degradation. The purpose of these initial research activities is to gain a better understanding of the bale net manufacturing processes and potential biobased polymer solutions before beginning the research on developing and testing polymer blends. The MSR&PC has invested $33,500 of soybean checkoff dollars in this overall $70,000 project. Minnesota Ag Bioscience Strategy An in-depth report, compiled by the worldrenowned Battelle Technology Partnership Practice, includes an assessment of Minnesota’s key capacities and opportunities in agricultural research and offers a suggested strategy for the state.

“This initiative is about creating a vision and strategy to transform Minnesota’s fundamental strength in agriculture into leading-edge innovation and economic growth for the state,” says AURI Executive Director Teresa Spaeth. Battelle interviewed more than 100 individuals across Minnesota including university faculty, researchers and research administrators as well as professionals in applied research, technology transfer and economic development. From that research came four key agbased bioscience research platforms for Minnesota. They include, Microbial AgBioscience, Efficient and Product Agricultural Systems, Bio-based Industrial Products and Value-Added Food and Health Products. The MSR&PC has invested $45,000 of soybean checkoff dollars in this overall $200,000 project.

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Tillage radishes such as these are one option for cover crops (Photo courtesy of Iowa Soybean Association On-Farm Network®)

Cover crops play role in soil health Research shows benefits to cover crops With environmental concerns, including soil conservation and health on the rise, the use of cover crops has been catching the attention of researchers and farmers in Minnesota. Nutrient loss, soil erosion, weed and pest control have been ongoing concerns for crop farmers. Even though cover crops are not a cure-all for these issues, their implementation can be seen as a tool to move in the right direction toward long-term benefits. “As farmers and producers, we need to be proactive and better conservationists,” says Dean Thomas, Soil Health Tech, Area 7 for the Fillmore Soil and Water Conservation District. “The use of cover crops pulls up nutrients for the next rotating crop.” Research done by the Midwest Cover Crops Council has shown that cover cropping is extremely beneficial to the soil nutrients. Cover crops improve the soil quality by increasing porosity (reducing compaction), soil organic matter, water holding capacity, beneficial microbes, micronutrients, macronutrients, as well as retaining nutrients that otherwise would have been lost, adding nitrogen through fixation, combating weeds and breaking disease cycles. Cover crops are also beneficial to the environment, increasing soil infiltration, which leads to less flooding, leaching and runoff. “Building soil health can eventually increase bushels per acre and decrease problems with disease,” Thomas says. “These crops also help avoid the leaching of nitrates after harvest, which could potentially contaminate nearby water supplies.” Determining what to plant, when to plant and where to plant is no easy task. Liz Stahl, Extension Educator for the University of Minnesota, says that research is being done 18 - Soybean Business - MAY - JUNE - 2015

By Kristeena Patsche on various cover crop planting dates and how the practice can fit into the two-crop rotation of corn and soybeans that is common in Minnesota. “We are hosting a Cover Crop Learning Tour on Sept. 15 for farmers to come and learn about different species based on benefits, planting dates, to see demonstrations and answer questions at the on farm research facility in Lakefield,” Stahl says. Stahl also notes that farmers who are cover cropping will be available to talk about their experiences and benefits they have seen. “It’s a learning game,” Thomas says. “The success of cover crops comes down to good management skills. If treated the same as other crops on your farm, the benefits are apparent.”

Iowa State Extension released the results of a three-year cover crop study, which looked at the use of no-tillage and cover crops. The use of rye cover crop overseeded into no-tillage soybeans reduced interrill tillage erosion by 54 percent and rill erosion by 90 percent compared to no-tillage without cover crops. The field studies also indicated that rye cover crops reduced nitrate loss by 96 percent while oat cover crops reduced losses by 75 percent. Lastly, the study showed that the usage reduced the number of weeds and provided a mulch for weed suppression.

Bean Briefs Biodiesel/Bioheat symposium coming to Minnesota As a national leader in the use of biodiesel for transportation fuels, it’s only natural that Minnesota would host the nation’s leader in Bioheat (the use of biodiesel in home heating oil). In August, the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council will be doing just that. To better understand the bioheat industry, the MSR&PC is hosting a team of 12 from New York City and surrounding areas to tour a Minnesota biodiesel facility, learn more about Minnesota Soybean and its leaders from both the Minnestoa Soybean Growers Association and MSR&PC, and to attend a Biodiesel/Bioheat Symposium. The tour is set for Aug. 18 and the symposium is planned for Aug. 19. A wide variety of topics are expected be covered at the symposium, including a market outlook for biodiesel, political issues such as the Renewable Fuel Standard, Biodiesel Tax Credit and Argentinian biodiesel, an inside look into the industry and environmental benefits of using biodiesel and Bioheat.

Adorkable Felfie contest comes to an end The Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council’s Adorkable Felfie Facebook contest has come to an end. The contest showcased some of our soybean farmer’s proudest moments on the farm, mostly capturing the funny or quirky side of farming. Congratulations to each winner! The contest tabbed three monthly winners, who each won a $500 gift card to Sears, as well as several weekly winners. Laura Compart won the first month of the contest with her “They’re Wild” Felfie entry. Compart, 25, grew up on her family hog, corn and soybean farm near Nicollet, Minn. The second month’s winner was Makayla Nepp, 22, who farms with her father in southern Minnesota. They raise corn, soybeans and hogs and Nepp herself owns a 1,000 head finisher hog site. Niki Johnson won the third and final month with her photo “Hailey approves of this purchase for the farm.” Johnson’s family has a farm near Sebeka, Minn., where they raise soybeans.


Ag Processing Inc

Linking Minnesota soybean producers to global markets

AGP’s Export Terminal Port of Grays Harbor Aberdeen, WA

Photo by Marc Sterling

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A Blast for the PAC

Annual fundraiser, new event help MSGA lead legislative efforts By Kristeena Patsche

As the summer months approach and the busy season is coming to an end, Minnesota Soybean Growers Association (MSGA) is gearing up for a fun-filled day of golfing and clay pigeon shooting. The Biodiesel Open has been a long-standing tradition for many growers but this year is the Bean Blast — a sporting clays competition. “We decided to add the Bean Blast because not everyone is into golfing,” says Lawrence Sukalski, an MSGA director and farmer from Martin County. “We want more people to get involved and be able to By Dan Lemke spark another interest.” While the two events offer a day of networking for MSGA members, farmers and industry partners, most of the money raised through both tournaments goes toward MSGA’s general fund, with the majority earmarked for lobbying and Hill visits. Lobbying puts a face on the issues and allows farmer voices to be heard in St. Paul and Washington, D.C. Some of the money, however, goes to the MN Soy Political Action Committee (PAC). The PAC donates those funds to political candidates who support the goals of Minnesota soybean farmers. The Advocacy team for MSGA, with consultation from lobbyists, determines to whom and in what amount to support candidates. Paul Freeman, Vice President of MSGA and Chair of the Advocacy team, says profitability of soybean farmers is the main objective of the MSGA, so it is important the right candidates are fighting for farmers. Sukalski adds: “Events like the Biodiesel Open and Bean Blast are a great opportunity to network and meet some of the great leaders, staff and industry 20 - Soybean Business - MAY - JUNE - 2015

representatives involved in the soybean industry. He added that farmers should attend to support the efforts of those fighting in St. Paul and Washington D.C. Biodiesel Open The Biodiesel Open is an 18-hole scramble format golf tournament, held June 19 at the North Links Golf Course in North Mankato, Minn. The golf tournament has been a long standing event that brings growers, producers and businesses together. Registration and lunch will begin at 10:30 a.m. with the tournament starting at 11:30 a.m. A social hour, dinner, prizes and auction will follow the golf scramble. The $100 entry fee ($25 goes to MN Soy PAC) includes 18 holes of golf, a cart, lunch, social hour, dinner and prizes. For more information about the event or to register, visit Registration deadline is June 1. Bean Blast The Bean Blast Tournament is new this year. It is a sporting clays tournament that will be held at the River Ridge Gun Club in Courtland, Minn. The course has 15 interactive shooting stations, with 100 targets per person. Registration and lunch will start at 10:30 a.m. with the tournament beginning at 11:30 a.m. After the competition, North Links Golf Course in North Mankato, Minn., will host a social hour and dinner with prizes. The $100 entry fee ($25 goes to MN Soy PAC) will include the clay shooting competition, lunch, social hour, dinner and prizes. For more information or to register, visit www. Registration deadline is June 1.

Your soybean checkoff dollars are at work all over the world. Want to learn how?

See For Yourself Apply for the 2016 Vietnam mission. Evaluate your checkoff at work.

Learn more at Brought to you by the Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council and the soybean checkoff. MAY - JUNE - 2015 - Soybean Business

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Decision Time

By Dan Lemke

Planting delays may mean adjustments in soybean maturity

Perfect growing seasons rarely happen. Each spring delivers a unique, sometimes wide range of influences that can keep farmers from getting crops planted. Cool temperatures and excess rain can prevent farmers from getting into the fields on time. If planting is delayed too long, farmers may have some decisions to make—primarily when they should consider switching soybean seed to an earlier maturing variety. When it comes to a planting window, University of Minnesota soybean scientist Seth Naeve admits there isn’t an abundance of data offering solid direction when farmers need to switch to an earlier variety. But he says generally, June 10 is the date farmers should consider planting an earlier bean variety. “In the past 10 or 20 years, farmers have been planting more beans with a longer maturity, so in many cases they’re pushing the timeline,” Naeve says. “If they are on the edge already, they may need to ratchet it back sooner.” Naeve says if farmers can’t get soybeans planted by May 1520, they can expect to see a loss in yield potential. If planting is delayed beyond June 1, those losses can be significant. Overall, Naeve says, it’s important for farmers to be aware of the maturities they are growing and how they will behave under regular conditions. That way they’ll know when and if they need to change seed to an earlier maturity. Most seed suppliers have protocol in place for exchanging seed. They should also be consulted to determine what available varieties may be reasonable alternatives. Planting narrower row spacing can be an option for late planted beans and those replanted in drowned out areas as a way to speed up canopy. Higher plant populations are also sometimes considered to increase yields given a shorter maturity window. Naeve says in theory both can help, but he cautions they may not make that much of a difference in yield in the “In the past 10 or 20 years, farmers have been planting more long run. Overall, Naeve encourages beans with a longer maturity, so in many cases they’re pushing the farmers to use best management practices timeline,” Naeve says. “If they are on the edge already, they may if planting dates are delayed. It may also be need to ratchet it back sooner.” worth it to cut losses and hope for a better year next year. “We will see reduced yields once we get into June,” Naeve contends. “At that point farmers may need to moderate their in-season spending and scale back their yield expectations. Be a realist about yield goals and be conservative with any additional inputs.” 22 - Soybean Business - MAY - JUNE - 2015

Nothing Fishy About Soy in Aquaculture Aquaculture may not be a major industry in the U.S., but for much of the rest of the world aquaculture provides protein to the diets of people everywhere. Thanks to checkoff-led research and promotion efforts across the globe, soybean meal is increasingly relied upon as a protein source for fish feeds. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations says greater reliance will be placed on soy-based fish feeds because it is the only protein product produced in sufficient quantity to meet global needs.

uPercent of soybeans used for U.S. aquaculture production: .87% uPercent of soybeans used for global aquaculture production: 10.52% uAsia collectively produces 88% of world’s aquaculture uGlobal soy demand for fish food is 11.8 million metric tons (MMT), equal to 479 million bushels uChina is #1 aquaculture producer at 45.4 MMT per year uChina uses 8.5 MMT of soybeans each year for fish food uSoutheast Asia collectively is #2, generating 2.2 MMT in soy demand for fish feed uSoy demand for fish food is expected to surpass 20 MMT in the next decade

Remember when we were famous for just our lakes? Today, Minnesota is becoming known around the world for our soybeans. Everyday, the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council uses your checkoff dollars to open more new markets for Minnesota soybeans than you can imagine. Want to learn more? Visit

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Legislative Work Doesn’t End When Session Ends Minnesota Soybean Growers Association Vice President Paul Freeman knows a thing or two about advocacy. He should, since the Starbuck, Minn., farmer has been at it awhile and chairs MSGA’s Advocacy team. Freeman recently took to MSGA’s website to share his thoughts on advocacy through weekly blog posts. Freeman, who says advocacy is a year-round commitment, hopes to help simplify the process to encourage more farmers to advocate on behalf of Minnesota agriculture. In one blog excerpt, he writes: The American farmer maintains a place of respect in our society because we are able to bring the issues back to common sense. It is in our DNA to get the job done with a natural pattern of timeliness. At the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association, the civic responsibility of having input in governance is taken seriously. We must empower our members with the tools and resources to ultimately make a difference. Freeman says as farmers approach the summer with the 2015 session fresh behind us, it is important to concentrate on events with our legislators where we live. “The word is proactive,” he says. “When legislators are in session, they don’t have time to listen as much. When we move into the summer, that’s the time to invite your legislators to a plot day, to breakfast on the farms or whatever event you’re hosting.” And he reminds his fellow farmers to relax and be themselves when meeting with legislators. “Be comfortable around your legislators,” he says. “Talk to them like anyone else. They don’t need to live in two different worlds, the legislative world in St. Paul 24 - Soybean Business - MAY - JUNE - 2015

By Doug Monson

and their home life. They appreciate a good discussion and combining what they do in St. Paul with what goes on out in the country.” Freeman says often times things that don’t get done in the current legislative session will be pushed off to the next session the following year. “That’s where Minnesota soybean farmers need to take advantage of that extra time to let their legislators know their position for the next legislative session,” he says. He also says another important aspect as session breaks and the July 1 date for new laws are implemented is that everything goes smoothly. “What does get put into law in this session, that’s the first step,” he says. “But we need to watch how that law gets implemented and make sure it doesn’t lose course from the law’s intent passed in session to its implementation.” Lastly, Freeman says, recognize your legislators. “Thank your legislators for what they’ve done for you,” Freeman says. “Too often, political things become adversarial. We need to remember to thank our legislators for all of the time and effort they have put in making our voices heard.” Paul Freeman’s weekly blog at offers more tips for advocating for MSGA members and other agriculture enthusiasts. MSGA also offers updated news content throughout the week. For a recap of the 2015 legislative session, visit msga.

Faces of MSGA

The Minnesota Soybean Growers Association is the nation’s largest soybean association. But that distinction is only possible because farmers across the state have made the choice to become members and get involved in the growth and promotion of soybean farming in Minnesota. Here are two examples of farmers, just like you, who actively promote our way of life. Aaron Jones Farming isn’t a spectator sport for Aaron Jones. The fifth-generation farmer is an active promoter of Minnesota agriculture. Jones farms with his dad, an uncle and a cousin near Lake Crystal in Blue Earth County. They raise corn and soybeans, as well as custom finish hogs for a neighbor. He lives on the farm with his wife Rachel, a nutrition educator with the University of Minnesota Extension, and their two small children. Jones left the farm and went to school at South Dakota State University, then to South Central College in Mankato for ag diesel mechanics. He worked as a mechanic before returning to the farm full time in 2008, raising wean to finish hogs. He later added a seed dealership to the mix. Jones serves on the Blue Earth County Corn and Soybean Growers Association Board. As part of his commitment to the organization and farming, Aaron has hosted multiple events on his farm over the years to help non-farmers understand more about modern agriculture. “You need to get out in front of people on issues to help them understand why we do what we do,” Jones says. “There’s a lot of misinformation out there.” Jones says he tries to give back to farming and the MSGA by helping out where he can. One particular issue that inspires him to be involved in connecting with others is biotechnology. “The whole GMO issue is important because there are a lot of concerns and bad information about that,” Jones says. “We’re doing what we can because we have to tell our side of the story.”

Aaron Jones

Amy Brateng

Amy Brateng and her husband Tony grow soybeans, wheat and perennial ryegrass for seed on their farm south of Roseau. Their path to farming wasn’t a typical one. While Amy grew up on a farm near Monticello, Tony grew up in town, although Amy Brateng his dad was an agronomist for the local coop. The two met at the University of Minnesota-Crookston while pursuing their agronomy degrees. About eight years ago, they bought a farm and began farming on their own. “I don’t know if owning my own farm was necessarily a goal for me, but I love that we’re able to do it,” Amy says. “It may have been a goal for Tony, but I’m not sure he felt it was attainable.” The Bratengs attained that goal and are fully immersed in farming. In fact, Amy says they were the first farmers to start growing soybeans on land they farm. In addition to their own operation, Amy operates a Pioneer seed business. She also serves on the Roseau/Lake of the Woods County Soybean Growers Association board. “You have to step back and ask yourself as a farmer if you have enough time to make all the calls and legislative visits on all the issues that affect you,” Brateng adds. “If you don’t, you need to be involved with organizations like the MSGA.” Brateng points to the recent 50-foot buffer proposal from Gov. Mark Dayton as an example of why farmers need to be a part of the discussion on policy. “What you get when you become a member is a voice that is heard much louder. That’s why I joined. I don’t have enough time nor does one voice speak as loud as when you’re part of an association.”

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Grain Storage and Management Farmers work all year to put a crop in the bin. The variety selection, soil fertility program, weed and pest management efforts all exist to maximize yields and profitability. But just because the grain is in the bin, that doesn’t mean the work is over. A year’s worth of income can be stored in grain bins, so it’s in a farmer’s best interest to take good care of what’s inside. As grain bins get larger and the contents more valuable, management and handling have become more complex. Grain management systems are available to help maintain and monitor grain condition. Choosing and trusting that system can help maximize grain condition.The following are some myths and commonly heard misconceptions about grain storage and grain management systems. Myth: I need to freeze my grain to protect it. Truth: According to Purdue University, fungal activity in shelled corn is greatly reduced when the grain is cooled below 40°F. If corn is uniformly cooled to 35°-40°F and held at that temperature, it can be safely stored through the winter. There is little additional protection against mold and toxin growth that can be achieved by freezing the grain. Todd Sears of IntelliFarms, maker of the BinManager system, says in some cases, farmers may only be freezing the bottom layer of grain, which restricts air flow through the rest of the bin. That can cause damage to the grain, increase the chances for condensation to occur when temperatures outside warm, leading to spoilage and possibly even causing damage to the bin itself.

on science-based results to determine which system is right for them. Myth: I can outsmart the technology. Truth: Many farmers have long track records of handling grain. That can be good and bad. Farmers may be accustomed to running fans through stored grain when the outside temperature and humidity “feel” right. “The air may seem right outside, but for the grain inside, that’s not what it needs to stay in condition,” Sears says. Miscalculations can cause mold and spoilage to occur very rapidly in stored grain. It’s best to buy a system you trust, and then trust the system you buy. Myth: I can only afford a grain management system when prices are high. Truth: For grain farmers, the only thing that pays the bills is the grain. If current grain management practices result in a 15 percent grain loss when prices are high, those losses will be there when prices are low and every bean or kernel takes on added importance.

Myth: All management systems are equal. Truth: With the growth in grain bin size and advances in technology has come a growth in the number of companies offering grain management and monitoring systems. It’s important that farmers ask questions and rely MAY - JUNE - 2015 - Soybean Business

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TAKE ACTION AGAINST HERBICIDE-RESISTANT WEEDS. I will know my weeds. When they grow. When they pollinate. And I will stop them before they go to seed. I will take action in the field and do whatever it takes to give my crops the upper hand against weeds. I will take action with careful herbicide management and use multiple herbicide sites of action, because every action counts. I will take action because it’s my bottom line. It’s not about this year or the next. It’s about the long term.

I will take action. This time. For all time. Now is the time to take action against herbicide-resistant weeds. Visit to learn how you can prevent herbicide-resistant weeds from spreading.

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Brought to you by the soy checkoff.

MSGA's Soybean Business May~June 2015  
MSGA's Soybean Business May~June 2015  

The official magazine of the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association.