Awareness that soy may lower cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease grew by 15% last year. According to the annual “Consumer Health Tracking Study,” funded by soybean checkoff dollars, 69% of consumers consider soy products to be healthy. At least 39% are aware of the specific health benefits of soy.

“Soy utilization in soyfood products increased 19% from 37 million bushels in 1999 to 44 million bushels in 2000,” says Kent Gronlie, United Soybean Board (USB) edible products subcommittee chair and farmer. “The soybean checkoff estimates soy utilization in soyfoods could reach 66 million bushels by 2005 and nearly 100 million bushels by 2010.”

According to the study, 97% of consumers are aware of soyfood products and more than one-quarter now use soy products once a week or more. The most popular items are soyburgers and beverages.

To view complete study results, visit the USB Web site: www.talksoy.com.