2023
In Support of the Iowa Soybean Research Center
Contributor/Checkoff:
Category:
Sustainable Production
Keywords:
Field management Industry outreach
Lead Principal Investigator:
Gregory Tylka, Iowa State University
Co-Principal Investigators:
Jill Cornelis, Iowa Soybean Research Center
Project Code:
Contributing Organization (Checkoff):
Leveraged Funding (Non-Checkoff):
Industry partner funding received by the Iowa Soybean Research Center is used to leverage ISA's funding to support research projects to help farmers.
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Institution Funded:
Brief Project Summary:
The Iowa Soybean Research Center focuses on all Iowa State University activities related to soybean biology, breeding, economics, precision agriculture, production and pest management in the state. The center involves and helps coordinate research, teaching and Extension faculty and staff who work in these areas. The ultimate, long-term goal of the center is to advance the understanding of soybean plant biology and increase soybean production, making production more profitable and environmentally sustainable in the future. Objectives of the Iowa Soybean Research Center include developing collaborative research opportunities between the ISRC's industry partners, the Iowa Soybean Association and ISU.
Key Beneficiaries:
#agronomists, #Extension agents, #farmers
Unique Keywords:
#collaboration, #iowa soybean research center, #research coordination, #soybean research
Information And Results
Project Summary

The Iowa Soybean Research Center will focus on all university activities related to soybean
biology, breeding, economics, precision agriculture, production and pest management in the
state. The center will involve and help coordinate research, teaching, and extension faculty and
staff who work in these areas. The ISRC’s overall mission is to advance the understanding of
soybean plant biology and increase soybean production, making production more profitable
and environmentally sustainable in the future.

Project Objectives

Specific goals of the center include:
• Develop strong public-private partnerships.
• Share research-based information that benefits the Iowa soybean industry.
• Provide training of undergraduate and graduate students and other personnel for
soybean related research, education, and production activities.
• Build and maintain communications with farmers and industry about soybean-related
research and education activities conducted by the center and its industry partners, the
Iowa Soybean Association and Iowa State University.
• Leverage and grow public and private funding of soybean-related research and
education activities at ISU.
• Provide collaborative research opportunities between the ISRC’s industry partners, the
Iowa Soybean Association, and ISU.

Project Deliverables

Deliverables and outcomes from the Iowa Soybean Research Center will include:
• Progress reports for the ISRC and its current research projects will be entered into the
National Soybean Research Database.
• Center update reports provided to the Iowa Soybean Association Directors for January,
June, and September meetings.
• Increased coordination of soybean research and education activities with the Iowa
Soybean Association staff and agribusiness personnel in Iowa.
• Better exchange of ideas and information, and participation in crop conferences and
educational meetings held by Iowa State University and the Iowa Soybean Association.
• Leveraged funding of soybean production research and education activities by the
soybean checkoff and the soybean industry.
• Greater cooperative research conducted by Iowa State University scientists and
researchers in the Iowa Soybean Association’s Research Center for Farming Innovation.
• Improved collaborations and exchange of ideas among other soybean centers and their
qualified state soybean boards, and university soybean researchers to seek large grants.

Progress Of Work

Update:
Soy is Feeding the Food Insecure
The ISRC hosted our 2nd Meals from the Heartland packaging event on August 5. The center received generous funding support from Cargill to purchase the meal ingredients and we had more than 40 volunteers help package over 38,000 meals. The ISRC staff was able to deliver over 1,000 meals to two Ames food bank locations, Food at First in downtown Ames and SHOP (Students Helping Our Peers) located on ISU’s campus to help the food insecure members of our local community. The remaining 36,000+ meals were distributed to other communities around Iowa, where needed and to Iowa’s sister state in Cherkasy Ukraine.

ISRC Hosts the ISA Board to ISU Campus
The ISRC hosted 45 Iowa Soybean Association farmer board members and staff on September 8-9, 2022, with tours of Iowa State University’s research facilities and research farms in Ames. The tours included a walking tour of labs in the Advanced Teaching and Research Building led by researchers from the plant pathology, entomology, and microbiology department who talked about their current soybean-related research. Following the tours, Mike Castellano and Marshall McDaniel from the agronomy department gave brief talks of their research projects on the Iowa Nitrogen Initiative and soil management and crop sustainability, respectively. Day two started early with a visit to the ISU Ag Engineering and Agronomy Research Farm for a tour of the Enviratron, a demonstration of Lie Tang’s field robot called the phenobot, and presentations by Danny Singh and Arti Singh’s research teams near their research field plots. Next, the group went to the BioCentury Research Farm where we learned about the soy asphalt pilot research project led by Eric Cochran, chemical and biological engineering department, and were led on a tour of the thermochemical laboratory by engineer Tannon Daugaard. The afternoon was spent outside at the Field Extension Education Lab (FEEL) listening to presentations on weed management, soybean cyst nematode management, and soybean management. A full story on the ISA visit to ISU can be found in the ISRC’s October 2022 newsletter at our website, www.iowasoybeancenter.org.

Annual Industry Advisory Council Meeting
The center’s annual Industry Advisory Council (IAC) meeting was held on September 15, 2022, at the Iowa Soybean Association Offices in Ankeny. In attendance were representatives from 16 of the 17 industry partners, two of three farmer representatives, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Dean Dan Robison, Ed Anderson (chair), and Greg Tylka (ISRC director). Dean Robison and Ed Anderson welcomed the council and expressed appreciation of industry’s commitment to the center. ISU researchers Prashant Jha from the agronomy department and Joffrey Mejias, postdoc with Thomas Baum’s lab in the plant pathology, entomology, and microbiology department at ISU gave brief presentations on their ISRC-funded projects, “Hyperspectural imaging for early detection of herbicide-resistant weeds in soybean,” and “Mechanisms of defense suppression by cyst nematode effectors.”
The ISRC received 12 new soybean research ideas in 2022 for review and discussion by the IAC. ISU researchers Sotirios Archontoulis, Joffrey Mejias, Silvina Arias and Gary Munkvold provided short synopses of their research ideas. Following lunch, the council held a closed discussion on the 12 research ideas and available funds of $300,000 to support new research. As part of the discussion, the farmer representatives spoke directly to the industry representatives in the room asking them to strongly consider increasing their partnership funding level to the center and help match the level of checkoff funds Iowa farmers are contributing toward soybean research through the ISRC. At the end of the meeting, two research ideas, “continuous soybean” from Sotirios Archontoulis and “seed treatment effects on the seed & soil microbiome,” by Gary Munkvold received the IAC’s endorsement.
The ISRC’s Management Team met a few days following the IAC meeting to make the final funding selections. Though the Management Team agreed to support the IAC’s recommendations, there was the issue of the available funds, $300,000, and the proposed budgets, $420,000. Greg Tylka met separately with both Archontoulis and Munkvold who agreed to make adjustments in their work plans to fit the $300,000 budget.
In November, the farmer representatives, also serving on the ISA Board, recommended the ISA Board approve an additional $13,000 to the ISRC to be used for funding of the new projects. Both projects received the additional funds and the researchers started their projects in January 2023.

Joint Communications
Early in November, Aaron Putze and the Iowa Soybean Association’s communications team invited Kara Berg, ISRC communications specialist, to a meeting in Ankeny. The meeting focused on ways the ISA and the ISRC could work together and share articles, press releases, etc. During the discussion, Aaron suggested doing a State of Soy episode with Greg Tylka. Videotaping of the interview was shot over ISU’s fall break in the Advanced Teaching and Research Building on campus. You can watch the video on the center's website, iowasoybeancenter.org.

ISRC Center Review
The ISRC was one of several centers tasked by the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences to conduct a Board of Regents center review in 2022. The purpose of the reviews were to determine if a center was still relevant, of the highest quality, and consistent with the institution’s mission and strategic plan. ISU Associate Dean for Research and Discovery, Carolyn Lawrence-Dill, provided guidance and oversight for the ISRC’s review.
A center review team was led by Ed Anderson, senior director of research at the Iowa Soybean Association. Other team members included Kelly Gillespie, Bayer; Steve Harris, plant pathology, entomology, and microbiology chair; Prashant Jha, agronomy; Leonor Leandro, plant pathology, entomology, and microbiology; Steve May, center industry recruiter; Randy Miller, current ISA President and representing ISA and soybean farmers; and Matt O’Neal, plant pathology, entomology, and microbiology.
The review team met on November 8, 2022, in Ames with the ISRC staff, the ISRC Affiliates, and Carolyn Lawrence-Dill for a full day of interviews, discussion, and questions and answers by the center director, the center staff, and ISU researchers. Overall, the center received positive reviews. Several researchers commented they view the ISRC as a valuable source of seed funding and as a conduit between academic research and understanding the needs of soybean farmers. It was noted the center is beneficial to many stakeholders through its promotion of short- and long-term research, teaching and outreach, while also serving as a model for six other soybean research centers across the U.S. The ISRC is also considered vital to the state, regional and national soybean industry and the broader agriculture industry. Key goals to help ensure the center’s viability going forward will be to strengthen its financial viability and its visibility.

Training
ISU researchers, Greg Tylka, Daren Mueller and Alison Robertson from the plant pathology, entomology, and microbiology department provided training to IndigoAg on November 30 and December 1, 2022. (IndigoAg is being recruited to join the center as an industry partner). Greg’s training session started at the Advanced Teaching and Research Building where he gave an overview on nematodes problematic to corn and soybean. Tylka also spoke in-depth on the biology and management of soybean cyst nematode and spent time with the group in ATRB’s teaching lab, where participants could observe different life stages of the microscopic pest. Daren and Alison discussed seedling diseases of corn and soybean. They explained how to identify certain diseases, the pathogens and their management options. In addition, Alison discussed her research on cover crops and its effect on corn seedling diseases.

Fall Conferences
Iowa State University’s Integrated Crop Management Conference was held on November 30 and December 1 at the Scheman Building on ISU’s campus. The ICM Conference is considered one of Iowa’s best crop production education events. The conference draws a large number of farmers, crop advisers, industry members, researchers and educators from across Iowa. The conference covered 34 topics in 66 sessions across crop, pest, soil fertility, and soil and water management areas. Nine ISRC affiliates presented on a variety of topics at the conference:
o Sotirios Archontoulis on the 2022 cropping year
o Mike Castellano on The Iowa Nitrogen Initiative
o Matt Helmers on the impact of in-field conservation practices in reducing nitrate loss
o Erin Hodgson on how to manage late-season pests and on soybean gall midge
o Prashant Jha on weed management
o Mark Licht on soybean management and redefining the field edge to increase
profitability, wildlife and improve water quality
o Antonio Mallarino on phosphorus and potassium research and on soil pH
o Daren Mueller on the management of soybean diseases
o Alison Robertson presented on the 2022 corn growing season and on managing a
cereal rye cover crop ahead of corn to ensure optimum yields

Greg Tylka attended the National Soybean Nematode Conference in Savannah, GA, December 14-16, 2022 and served on the conference planning committee. Greg gave a presentation on, “Challenges in Advancing Soybean Nematode Management: Opportunities to Grow”. In addition, five soybean centers from the Coordinated Soybean Centers Group sponsored a luncheon at the conference: the Iowa Soybean Research Center, Missouri Soybean Center, Illinois Soybean Center, Purdue University Soybean Center, and the Center for Soybean Research at Ohio State University.

ISRC Welcomes ISA’s Senior Director for Research at ISU Event
The ISRC hosted a welcome reception at the ISU Seed Science Center on February 28, 2023 for Christie Wiebbecke, ISA’s new senior director for research. Christie and Ed Anderson both currently serve in the role, but Christie will take over fully on May 1, 2023 as Ed retires from the ISA. The welcome reception was an opportunity for ISU researchers working in the area of soybean research to meet Christie face-to-face. The center believes these gatherings of ISA and ISU researchers are valuable and will host similar events once or twice every year.

New Industry Partners join the ISRC
Steve May, the ISRC’s Industry Recruiter, recently signed-on Nutrien and Sound Agriculture as the center’s newest industry partners. Nutrien is one of the world’s largest providers of crop inputs, particularly potash and nitrogen fertilizer. Sound Agriculture develops nature-based solutions for tastier, healthier and more sustainable food. Their breakthrough biochemical technology enables agriculture to adapt faster to climate change and evolving consumer preferences. The center is excited to welcome these companies.

Future Events
•Syngenta is hosting a training workshop for their agronomists on March 22-23, 2023 at ISU’s Seed Science Center. Jill Cornelis, ISRC’s Research Administrator, is organizing the workshop as she does each year for Syngenta. The ISRC offers services like this to all of their industry partners.

•The ISRC is sponsoring a $500 travel award at the American Society for Plant Biologists (ASPB) Conference in Ames on April 22-23, 2023. The award will be given to a graduate student, undergraduate student or a postdoc working on soybean-related research.

•For the second year in a row, Cargill is providing a generous gift of $10,000 for the ISRC to host another Meals from the Heartland meal packaging project. The event is set for August 2, 2023 at the ISU Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center. The ISRC will sign up about 50 volunteers to help package nutritious meals for food insecure members of our community. Soy protein is the “life-saving” ingredient in these healthy meals.

•SoyFest 2023 is scheduled for August 23, 2023.

Update:
ISA Board Supports Additional Funding for Research
The ISRC Management Team approved funding for two projects in September 2022 for “Continuous soybean” and “Seed treatment effects on the seed & soil microbiome” with the $300,000 research funding available. In November, the Industry Advisory Council farmer representatives, also serving on the ISA Board, recommended the ISA Board approve an additional $13,000 to the ISRC to be used for funding the two new projects. The additional funds were received and the researchers began work on their projects in January 2023.

Research Project Updates
Progress reports and a final report of current ISRC research projects were added this spring into the National Soybean Checkoff Research Database and on the ISRC’s website, iowasoybeancenter.org.
Progress reports:
• Time of disease onset as an early indicator of soybean resistance to SDS, Leonor Leandro
• Low-cost multimodal senor arrays for early-detection of soybean diseases, Liang Dong
• Effects of increased atmospheric CO2 and abiotic stress on soybean performance in the Enviratron, Danny Singh, Lie Tang, Steve Whitham
• Enhancing implementation and adoption of non-chemical tactics for integrated weed management in soybean, Prashant Jha
Final report:
• Mechanisms of defense suppression by cyst nematode effectors, Thomas Baum

Discussion Points from FFAR Meeting with the ISRC – March 2023
During the ISRC’s 2022 annual Industry Advisory Council meeting last September in Ankeny, Iowa, council representatives asked if funds provided by the ISRC to support research projects could be matched with funds from the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR).
In early March 2023, Carolyn Lawrence-Dill, associate dean for research and discovery in the ISU College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Greg Tylka and Jill Cornelis of the ISRC met with Jeff Rosichan, FFAR’s Director of Crops of the Future Collaborative, via Zoom to discuss the above-stated possibility.
The meeting started with Greg explaining to Jeff how the ISRC works and how research projects are selected for funding.
Highlights from the discussion with Jeff include:
• FFAR funding is complementary, not competing with other federal funding agencies
• FFAR requires a one-to-one match
• FFAR prefers grants selected competitively (although it is possible to submit unsolicited proposals to FFAR as well)
• FFAR will not fund projects with narrow principal investigator participation. Projects must involve more than just one state. Projects need to have broad participation.
• FFAR funding has a lot of flexibility
• Jeff mentioned four grant programs related to agriculture:
1. Seeding Solutions – annual grants program supporting bold research in food supply and agroecosystem management. Pre-applications are required in late January and award notification comes in the fall following FFAR’s Advisory Council meeting.
2. New Innovator in Food & Agriculture Research Award – provides funding to early-career scientists whose research addresses significant food and agriculture challenges. Matching funds are not required for this program.
3. Rapid Outcomes from Agricultural Research (ROAR) grants – provides rapid deployment of funding in response to an outbreak, ex. soybean gall midge. Funding decisions can be made within days. The program is open year-round.
4. FFAR Fellows Program – program established to provide career guidance to the next generation of food and agriculture scientists. Graduate Student Fellows receive grants to pursue research that aligns with FFAR’s Challenge Areas. Additionally, Fellows participate in professional and interpersonal skills training. Each Fellow grant requires a sponsor.
In summary, FFAR can only match funding on a project; FFAR cannot match funding that is not associated with a project. FFAR will only fund projects with broad participation. Projects must involve multi-state/multi-investigator that have gone through a competitive, scientific review. The ISRC typically funds single-state/single-institutional investigator(s) projects.

ISRC Welcomes ISA’s Senior Director for Research at ISU Event
The ISRC hosted a welcome reception at the ISU Seed Science Center on February 28, 2023 for Christie Wiebbecke, ISA’s new senior director for research. The reception was an opportunity for ISU researchers working in the area of soybean research to meet Christie face-to-face. The center believes these gatherings of ISA and ISU researchers are valuable and will host similar events once or twice every year.

Syngenta Spring Agronomy Training Workshop
Jill Cornelis, research administrator for the ISRC, helped coordinate the Syngenta Spring Agronomy Training Workshop hosted at the Seed Science Center March 21-22. Guest speakers for the two-day workshop included ISU researchers Greg Tylka (SCN), Meaghan Anderson (Corn & Soybean Growth Development), Erin Hodgson (Iowa Insect Update & ID quiz), Alison Robertson (Iowa Corn Disease Update), Daren Mueller (Iowa Soybean Disease Update), and Prashant Jha (Weed ID).

Personnel Changes for ISU Agronomy Department
Kendall Lamkey is the new associate dean for facilities and operations in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences effective May 16, 2023. Lamkey has been a faculty member at ISU since 2002 and chaired the department of agronomy since 2007 after serving one year as the interim chair. As agronomy chair, Lamkey also served on the ISRC’s Management Team, which makes research-funding decisions based on feedback from the center’s Industry Advisory Council.
Mary Wiedenhoeft is interim agronomy department chair, effective May 16, 2023. Wiedenhoeft, Morrill Professor of Agronomy, is a graduate of Iowa State with a B.S. in agronomy and earned her Ph.D. in crop physiology from Washington State University. She was a faculty member at the University of Maine for 12 years before joining ISU’s Department of Agronomy in 1999. As interim chair, Wiedenhoeft will also serve on the ISRC’s Management Team.

New Industry Partners Join the ISRC
The ISRC welcomes Nutrien and Sound Ag as new industry partners with the center. Nutrien is one of the world’s largest providers of crop inputs, particularly potash and nitrogen fertilizer. Sound Ag develops nature-based solutions for tastier, healthier and more sustainable food.

Follow the ISRC on Twitter
On May 1, the ISRC activated their Twitter account. Be sure to follow us on Twitter @ISU_SoyCenter.

ISRC Staff Plants Soybeans
On May 23, Kara Berg, communications specialist, and Jill Cornelis, research administrator, helped the Tylka Lab crew plant part of the soybean variety trial plots near Ames, Iowa. This was the first time Kara and Jill experienced soybean planting and soil sampling. It was a beautiful day for planting!

SCN Videos
Greg Tylka, director of the ISRC and professor of plant pathology, entomology and microbiology at ISU hosted videos for the SCN Coalition this summer. Filming of the videos took place in the Tylka research lab in the Advances Teaching and Research building on campus. The videos and more information about soybean cyst nematode can be viewed on the SCN Coalition’s website, thescncoalition.com.

ISRC’s Annual Staff Retreat
The ISRC hosted their annual Staff Retreat on June 21 at the ISU Core Facility-ISU Research Park in Ames. Steve May, industry recruiter for the ISRC, and Christie Wiebbecke, senior director of research for the Iowa Soybean Association attended the retreat along with the center’s staff Greg Tylka, Jill Cornelis, and Kara Berg. The focus of this year’s retreat was on the center’s upcoming Industry Advisory Council (IAC) meeting set for September 8. A Think Tank to help discover potential research areas in soybean production is scheduled in the morning followed by the IAC meeting in the afternoon. With the large number of soybean industry people already attending the IAC meeting, the timing of the Think Tank was very efficient use of people’s time. The IAC meeting in the afternoon, chaired by Christie Wiebbecke, will include discussions and guidance from the IAC on research investments for FY24.

ISRC Reaches Twenty Industry Partners
Ag Ingenuity and Meristem are the ISRC’s newest industry partners, which brings the total number of partners to 20. Ag Ingenuity Partners is the research division of Advanced Agrilytics. They specialize in spatial agriculture research. Meristem Crop Performance offers biologicals for crop inputs. Welcome to both!
2023 Iowa Youth Crop Scouting Competition Largest Turnout Ever
The Iowa Youth Crop Scouting Competition was hosted at the ISU Field Extension Education Lab (FEEL) 8 miles west of Ames on July 27. The goal of this event is to educate Iowa youth on the basics of integrated pest management (IPM), fostering a lifetime of understanding about the concepts and importance of IPM. This year’s competition included fifty youth from around Iowa in grades 7-12. This was the fifth year the ISRC has been a sponsor of the event.

Soybean Meetings in Indianapolis
The Coordinated Soybean Centers Group (CSCG) meeting was held in Indianapolis, Indiana on July 26. Ed Anderson, director of the North Central Soybean Research Program (NCSRP), led the meeting. The CSCG includes representatives of soybean centers and their state soybean associations from Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, and now North Carolina. Christie Wiebbecke from ISA and Greg Tylka and Jill Cornelis from the ISRC represented Iowa at the meeting.
Following the Coordinated Soybean Centers Group meeting, the US Soybean Research Collaborative (USSRC) held their third annual Soybean Research Forum and Think Tank in Indianapolis on July 27-28. This year’s focus was on traceability and transparency.

August is Soybean Month in Iowa….Check Out the Activities

ISRC hosts the ISA Experience Class
On August 2, the Iowa Soybean Association’s Experience Class visited two ISU Farms near Boone. Jill Cornelis coordinated the visit for twenty Experience Class participants with ISA’s Kennady Moffett to tour the Field Extension Education Lab (FEEL) and the Ag Engineering/Agronomy (AEA) Farm. The first stop for the class included a ride on the people-mover as Edward Ernat, manager of FEEL and graduate student in plant pathology, entomology, and microbiology, shared with the group information about what kinds of demonstrations go on at FEEL. Edward explained how the plots work and who utilizes the field plots. The class learned about different field demonstrations, everything from growing sunflowers to replicating hail crop damage to beneficial pollinator prairie plots. Following the outdoor tour of FEEL, the class moved indoors and listened to a brief overview about identification of various soybean diseases from Monica Pennewitt, graduate student of Greg Tylka’s, and Chelsea Harbach, Extension specialist in the ISU Plant & Insect Diagnostic Clinic from the department of plant pathology, entomology, and microbiology. Monica and Chelsea also offered the group an opportunity to identify soybean diseases on their own using soybean models used in classrooms to teach students about soybean diseases.
The Experience Class’ last tour stop of the ISU Farms took them on a short drive east to the ISU AEA Farm where Carolina Freitas, graduate student of Sotirios Archontoulis’, talked with the group about her project on continuous soybean. This is a brand new project funded last year by the Iowa Soybean research Center and designed to learn how to best grow continuous soybeans in anticipation of a major increase for demand for soybean oil in upcoming years. Carolina demonstrated how hydrology data is gathered using hydrology sensors to measure for soil moisture and how the team is able to use the information in the soybean fields.

Meals from the Heartland Meal Packaging and Meal Donations
The ISRC hosted their third annual Meals from the Heartland meal packaging event on August 2 at ISU with Cargill providing generous support of the meal ingredients and supplies for the third year. Included in the meal ingredients is soy protein, the life-saving ingredient in the meals. More than fifty volunteers helped packaged over 38,000 meals (176 boxes) in just over 2 hours for people in our communities needing a healthy meal. In the three years of packaging the meals, the center and our volunteers have packaged over 96,000 meals, which equates to feeding 370 kids for an entire year. The ISRC staff give special thanks to the Cargill Cares Program and our many, many volunteers for their generous support!
The center was able to donate and deliver eleven boxes (2,376 meals) of meals to our local Ames community food banks, Food at First in downtown Ames and the Students Helping Other Peers (SHOP) on ISU’s campus. The remaining 165 boxes of meals were distributed by the Meals from the Heartland organization.

ISRC Hosts Summer Field Tour
On August 7, the ISRC hosted twenty-two ISU researchers on a one-day field tour. Our first visit was the Bruce Wessling farm near Grand Junction, Iowa. Sheila Hebenstreit, independent agronomy consultant and past ISA Board Director, invited us to the Wessling’s to learn about their operation of low-till and other conservation practices. Bruce was unavailable, but Bruce’s farming partners, Austin Saddoris and Wade Sohm, and another local farmer Sheila works with on conservation practices, David Ausberger, hosted our group. Most of the discussion was about how conservation practices started for them, what types of conservation practices are used on their farms and why. We learned about the USDA’s CRP (Conservation Reserve Program) and FWP (Farmable Wetlands Program) the Wessling’s use in their farming practices. Additionally, our hosts explained the use of buffer strips, oxbows, and tile drainage as it relates to bioreactors.
Next, Clayton Farms salads was on the field tour’s lunch menu. Salads were delivered fresh to us at our lunch stop at a local park in Boone, where we took a brief respite before starting our afternoon tour of the Clayton Farms vertical farming operation located at the ISU Research Park in Ames. Vertical farming is growing vertically stacked layers. At Clayton Farms, they grow several lettuces, microgreens and cherry tomatoes hydroponically. Their focus is on their delivery business and getting fresh ingredients to their customers the same day as harvested. Clayton Farms Restaurant recently opened in Ames and they have plans to expand their market into the Iowa City/Cedar Rapids area and the Minneapolis, MN area.

Final Project Results

Benefit To Soybean Farmers

The purpose of The Iowa State University Iowa Soybean Research Center is to increase collaboration, coordination, and integration among Iowa State University, Iowa Soybean Association, industry, and farmers to align the soybean-related activities at ISU with the needs of Iowa soybean farmers and the industry that supports production of the crop. The Center will involve and help coordinate research, teaching, and extension faculty and staff who work in the areas of soybean biology, breeding, economics, precision agriculture, production, and pest management at ISU and The Iowa Soybean Association (ISA).

The United Soybean Research Retention policy will display final reports with the project once completed but working files will be purged after three years. And financial information after seven years. All pertinent information is in the final report or if you want more information, please contact the project lead at your state soybean organization or principal investigator listed on the project.