The American Soybean Association (ASA), a membership-driven policy organization representing 25,000 members, is presenting a series of seven one-day Soybean Rust Education meetings around the country that will help farmers in the United States be better informed about soybean rust and better prepared to deal with its eventual spread to the U.S. Without early detection and proper fungicide applications, soybean rust can cause yield losses of up to 80 percent, depending on the plant’s growth stage at infection.

“Growers need to have a better understanding of how to properly manage this disease before it arrives, and ASA is committed to helping inform and prepare growers,” says ASA President Ron Heck, a soybean producer from Perry, Iowa. “The meetings will bring together ASA leaders, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) officials, scientists, industry representatives, and soybean growers to discuss the latest information about soybean rust.”

At the rust education meetings, experts will talk about the approval status and registration of fungicide products to combat the disease in the U.S., discuss fungicide application techniques and equipment, and present identification and detection methods for soybean rust.

The Soybean Rust Education meeting dates and locations are:

July 21, 2004, Raleigh, N.C.

July 22, 2004, Plain City, Ohio

July 23, 2004, Memphis, Tenn.

July 27, 2004, Indianapolis, Ind.

July 28, 2004, Fremont, Neb.

July 29, 2004, Moline, Ill.

July 30, 2004, Mankato, Minn.

Registration for these meetings is free to current ASA members. A registration fee of $30.00 will be charged to non-members, which can be applied toward association membership. To register in advance for one of the meetings, go to www.SoyGrowers.com/rust for an online registration application, or contact ASA toll free at 800-688-7692. Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for meeting attendance have been applied for.

ASA’s Soybean Rust Education series is conducted in cooperation with the USDA and is sponsored by BASF Corporation, Bayer CropScience, Dow AgroSciences, John Deere, Sipcam Agro USA and Syngenta Crop Protection.