Supply

Five Trends Impacting the Future of the Global Soy Market

In 2021, U.S. soybean farmers grew nearly one-third of the soybeans in the global market.[1] Customers around the world look to U.S. Soy to provide a reliable supply of high-quality soybeans and soybean products for their growing needs. Programs developed by the U.S. Soy industry, including U.S. soybean growers’ associations, are critical to satisfying demand in the global marketplace.

To ensure U.S. Soy retains access to a quickly changing, consumer-driven market, five state soybean checkoff groups jointly funded an effort designed to help soybean farmers make smart and informed decisions that will increase opportunities for future success. Soybean checkoffs from the states of Illinois (Illinois Soybean Association),Indiana (Indiana Soybean Alliance), Iowa (Iowa Soybean Association), Missouri (Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council), and Ohio (Ohio Soybean Council) collaborated to conduct the Future State of Soy exercise that identified the most impactful trends for soy in the coming years.

“We uncovered five major trends that will impact the global soy market and U.S. soybean farmers in particular,” said Steve Pitstick, Illinois Soybean Association Chairman. “These trends help uncover how the global demand for soybeans will change over the course of the next several decades, giving farmers valuable insight now to make decisions that will better position them for the future.”

The five trends identified in the Future State of Soy exercise include:

  • A rising focus on high-quality soybean oil and meal
  • Changes in fuel demand, including alternative fuels, and emerging fuel uses
  • The rising need for protein given a growing global population – both in animal and plant form
  • The increasing global competition for soy and how infrastructure can provide an impactful advantage
  • Emerging and diversified revenue streams that will offer farmers more opportunities

“We know that every farmer and every farm is unique,” said Pitstick. “Identifying these trends enables farmers to determine if their farm is set up to take advantage of one over another, or if it can support a multitude of changes to take advantage of several trends. The ultimate purpose for this exercise is to help farmers navigate changes now so they are set up for the future of this industry. Proactively addressing how the market is shifting means we won’t be left scrambling to meet market demands later, which will keep U.S. Soy in high demand around the world.”

The soybean checkoff is already investing in several programs at both the national and state levels to find new markets, new uses and new characteristics of soybeans that will align with these five trends. The soybean checkoff will also use these trends as a litmus test when determining if future investments will result in strong returns for U.S. soybean farmers. As the soybean checkoff continues to position U.S. Soy for the future, this work will help influence how the world perceives the value of domestic soy and soy products.

For more information about the Future State of Soy exercise, visit FutureStateOfSoy.org.

[1] https://ourworldindata.org/soy

George Harper

Director, Investor and Industry Communications

United Soybean Board