Soybean and Grain Research and Promotion Board members front row from left: Joey Olivier, Charles Cannatella, Joey Boudreaux and Garrett Marsh; and back row from left, Kellon Lee, Kody Beavers, Luke Sayes, Wil Miller and Burch Pierce.
What do you do when you have a potential record crop, but lose much of it in two weeks’ time when a system of rain sets in? You buckle down and farm forward in hopes of doing it again.
The 2022 harvest brought a host of challenges to our soybean and grain farmers in Louisiana. All of the research we support as a board seemed to come together to support a lot of great farms looking at a very bountiful crop. That all changed rapidly as rain set in across our state.
Now in the 2023 crop, Mother Nature is giving us the opposite challenge — not enough rain. We also faced challenges in the wheat crop and early corn crop with a late freeze. However, our years of study and practice through our research and extension partners have once again given us the opportunity to look forward to a harvest and bringing in our crops with success.
The Louisiana Soybean and Grain Research and Promotion Board serves as Louisiana’s wheat and corn checkoff and facilitates the national checkoffs for soybeans and grain sorghum in Louisiana. As a collective representation of farmers from across the state and across these represented crops, we strive to collectively administer funds for research specific to the needs of Louisiana while contributing to larger market promotion and advancement of these important crops.
However, this checkoff system is once again in question with members of Congress. But for those of us who have worked in it and contributed to it for so long, we know how valuable it can be. One priority for your Louisiana Soybean and Grain Research and Promotion Board in the coming year is to determine how we can better share this good work and research results with you. Our efforts are only useful if those who contribute are receiving the return on their investment through the information they receive.
With a host of new members on our board last year, we began to examine why many of them weren’t aware of the great projects the board was funding until they were on the board. So, for 2023 and into 2024, we hope you will look beyond just this annual report and continue to further engage with our contracted partners who carry out the work that benefits soybean, corn, wheat and milo farmers throughout the state. Your checkoff board wants to get your information out to you!
One specific project the board has been funding is getting more attention because of the challenges we faced with grain quality during harvest. Louisiana State Sen. Glen Womack created the Task Force on Louisiana Automated Grain Grading through the Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 31 in the 2023 legislative session. Our board should be a great resource for this group, as we have been funding a project for three years to create grading technologies that will benefit the farmer.
Beyond grading, our board continues to focus your dollars on applied research that generates better yields and returns back to you. The checkoff is a very fruitful investment if you will just dedicate a little time, along with your pennies, to absorb the knowledge and education your money is generating.
So, get involved, share your thoughts and questions, and let’s make this a great year for research and promotion of soybeans, corn, wheat and grain sorghum. We have a lot of excitement occurring with our partners at the LSU AgCenter. We have attention and interest from our legislators. And we have a board of farmers that are volunteering their time to collectively achieve a better opportunity for Louisiana farmers. With those pieces, I believe we can once again produce results that each of you can be proud of. Thank you for your support, and thank you for your contributions to our checkoff. Sincerely,
Chairman, Louisiana Soybean and Grain Research and Promotion Board