At $10.00 per bushel, the estimated value of soybeans grown in the United States in 2010 was $33.3 billion, but are soybean growers getting all they can from their fields? Not according to a study Dr. Steve Koenning at North Carolina State, Dr. Carl Bradley at the University of Illinois and I conducted with a team of researchers from around the United States. The results of this study show diseases continue to reduce yields and grower income.
The estimated loss of soybean due to diseases, including nematodes, in the United States during 2010 was 478 million bushels valued at $4.8 billion.
The greatest soybean losses across the United States in 2010 were caused by soybean cyst nematode, followed by sudden death syndrome, seedling diseases, Phytophthora root and stem rot, and charcoal rot. Soybean rust did not reduce USA soybean yield in 2010 and has only slightly suppressed soybean yields in the southern production area during 2005 to 2009.
The objective of this multi-year research project funded by soybean checkoff dollars through the United Soybean Board is to help funding agencies and scientists focus on the major problems that occur in the United States so they can focus research and develop solutions more quickly.
More information about soybean yield losses due to diseases in the United States during 1996 to 2010 has been posted on the University of Missouri web site at http://aes.missouri.edu/delta/research/soyloss.
REVISED: December 1, 2011