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Soybean Variety Performance Results Available From Penn State
Soybean Variety Performance Results Available From Penn State
If you haven’t purchased your soybean seed yet, it may pay you to check out the results of the variety trials conducted by agronomists at Penn State.
 
“There are many things farmers can’t control, like the weather, growing conditions, and pressure from disease, insects and weeds. But seed selection is the one thing farmers do have control over,” says Penn State agronomist Dr. Greg Roth. “It’s probably one of the most important management decisions a farmer can make. The variety selection can make as much as a 15 bu./acre difference, which can dramatically impact a farmer’s bottom line.”
 
In research funded in part by the soybean checkoff, Penn State agronomists conducted the 2017 Soybean Performance Trials on both early and late glyphosate-resistant varieties and non-glyphosate resistant varieties in test plots at the University’s research centers in Landisville, Lancaster County, and Rock Springs, Centre County.  A total of 142 varieties were tested. “We had very good trials at both locations this year with yields averaging around 70 bu./acre for most tests,” says Roth.  Results are available at https://extension.psu.edu/2017-soybean-variety-trials and on the Research page at the Pennsylvania Soybean Board website at www.pasoybean.org.
 
The reports also allow producers to get an independent perspective of how different soybean traits are yielding.  “In our report, we included a description of traits to distinguish between Roundup® Ready and Roundup Ready Xtend® varieties. At both sites, we also conducted a non-glyphosate trial of conventional, Liberty Link, and STS varieties. “We included several glyphosate-resistant checks in each of these tests to compare relative performance. On average, in this test, the Liberty Link lines yielded as well or better than the glyphosate resistant lines,” says Roth.
 
In addition, a double crop trial was conducted at the Landisville site that included glyphosate-resistant varieties.
 
Increasingly, quality, not just yield, is becoming important to purchasers of soybean. The true value to end users comes from what’s inside the soybean; principally, its protein (representing approximately 65 percent of the value of the soybean) and oil (representing the other 35 percent.)
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