The Soy Checkoff has developed a new five-year plan, focusing on innovation to drive development of new products and services that meet customers' needs.
Farmer-leaders developed the plan, which will guide all national soy checkoff investments from fiscal years 2017 to 2022.
The plan is focused on a future where the U.S. soy industry increases the value of soybean meal for various species, from poultry to pork to aquaculture, and is recognized by customers for its highly desirable attributes such as its superior amino-acid profile and sustainability.
United Soybean Board Chairman and Kansas farmer Bob Haselwood said soybean farmers have had a good few years, but they're looking toward long-term profitability, which will look different in the future.
"We need to focus on meeting our customers' changing needs, and giving them a reason to keep choosing U.S. soy over increasing competition," he said. "That's what's going to help us ensure our children and grandchildren will have the same chance to maximize their profit opportunities that we have had."
The new plan also prioritizes supporting soybean farmers' use of technological advances to maximize their on-farm profit opportunities, as well as the ongoing development of high oleic soybean oil to increase soy's share of the edible-oil market.
"We are intensifying our focus on the areas that matter most to farmer-profit potential," said USB Vice Chairman Jared Hagert, who led a panel of national- and state-checkoff farmer-leaders in drafting the new plan.
"The nine central goals of the plan focus on the areas that stand to bring the most value to U.S. soybean farmers," he said.
The group worked with others throughout the U.S. soy value chain – state soybean boards, land-grant universities, extension, processors, buyers and customers – to ensure all are aligned "for the good of the industry," Hagert said.
Haselwood added that USB has always been forward thinking and strategic in investments.
"But the national soy checkoff has risen to a new level with this progressive framework, and the American soybean farmers we serve – our families, friends and neighbors among them – deserve nothing less," he said.