Soybean harvest is over and it is time to evaluate performance. IP promoters have been active in their quest to sign up growers for next year. Premiums have been established earlier than ever and the story is demand for IP soybeans is high. Please sign up, life is good for IP producers.
I admit to a having a bias because I sell RR soybeans, but the interesting thing is there is a lot of RR soybeans grown in the area for crush and for seed production. I have been doing a straw poll among growers inquiring about yields and a clear trend has emerged. I know that my poll has no scientific basis for accuracy because IP and RR soybeans are never grown by the same grower in the same field. However, this is what I have found out so far.
RR soybeans are yielding better than IP soybeans. Using 50 bus as a bench mark, RR soybeans are consistently above 50. Out of my poll of 20 RR soybean growers, 17 reported yields of over 50 bus. They consistently mentioned a high level of satisfaction with the performance of their RR varieties. Contrast this with the average response of an IP grower. IP varieties have been consistently yielding less than 50 bus and growers express a much higher level of disappointment with these varieties' performance.
If I were to put an average to it I would say the minimum difference is 5 bus. If you take the newest RR genetics like 91Y01, P16T04R and P19T01R the difference is greater than 5 bus.
Assuming 50 bus yield plus a $3 IP premium nets an additional $150 per acre for IP. No doubt this is attractive and worth considering. Taking a 5 bus yield penalty and extra herbicide cost cuts the premium in half. Is $75 dollars worth the extra hassle of making sure the beans are perfect to capture all the premium offered?
I encourage everyone to offer their opinion. If I am wrong, please tell me. I know the discussion will continue.