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Jack Leslie, Upper Sandusky, Ohio, raises high-oleic soybeans as a new income source for the family farm. "We think it is a good fit for our operation. It adds extra dollars to the business and is another income stream," he says. "It helps me stay competitive, because you either expand and try new things or you fall behind."
Other added benefits: Leslie says he doesn't have to wait in line to deliver soybeans at harvest. He pulls up to a segregated area at a local co-op and dumps the load. In addition to a 60-cent premium, he gets a rebate on his chemical program for planting Vistive Gold varieties.
Rebuild market share
According to the United Soybean Board (USB), the U.S. soybean industry has lost 4 billion pounds of oil demand annually since 2008. Trans fat labeling cut market share from 80 to 60%.
USB says high oleic demand could be more than nine billion pounds of U.S. soybean oil -- the oil from 808 million bushels -- cumulatively to the food and industrial sectors.
"Future acreage will be significant, in the range of 15-20 million acres in the next seven to nine years," says Sanders. "Some farmers may even become strictly high oleic growers."