On-Farm Network Takes Soybean Research into Pa. Fields
HARRISBURG, PA (April 3, 2019) – As soybean producers throughout Pennsylvania begin planting their 2019 crop, a group of growers are also participating in research projects through the On-Farm Network.
The On-Farm Network takes soybean research studies out of the lab and small test plots into the fields of Pennsylvania soybean growers. Now in its tenth year, the On-Farm Network is a program funded by checkoff dollars through the Pennsylvania Soybean Board and administered by researchers and Extension educators at Penn State.
This year, On-Farm Network research will focus on several continuing projects, including slug monitoring and the determination of yield-limiting factors in soybean production. Two new studies on good inoculation practices and soybean response to no-till deep ripping practices will also begin in 2019.
“Our 2019 program continues to focus on establishing sampling areas in the field to look at what factors influence yield at the local, regional and state level, while also addressing new areas of need based on conversations with soybean farmers in Pennsylvania,” says Penn State Plant Pathologist Dr. Paul Esker, who along with Senior Extension Educator Del Voight heads the On-Farm Network. “The success of the On-Farm Network over the past 10 years has been the ability to adapt and address the needs of Pennsylvania’s soybean farmer. It’s a tremendous team effort involving students, researchers and Extension educators working in collaboration with the soybean farmer.”
With current estimates indicating another record soybean planting in Pennsylvania and increased acreage in the northern and western parts of Pennsylvania, the On-Farm Network will conduct research specific to the growing environment of those areas, including the use of seed treatment fungicides.
The Network works by conducting research in real-world conditions on test plots planted by farmer/collaborators throughout Pennsylvania on their own farms with their own equipment. In 2018, research and monitoring plots were conducted in 27 counties around the state.
For the results of past studies from the On-Farm Network, go the Pennsylvania Soybean Board website at www.pasoybean.org. During the growing season, updates will be available through the Field Crop News from Penn State Extension.
About the Pennsylvania Soybean Board
The Pennsylvania Soybean Board is a farmer-controlled Board responsible for managing Pennsylvania’s share of funds received from the nationwide Soybean Checkoff program. The funding is available under an assessment program, approved by Congress in 1990, under which soybean farmers contribute 50 cents of every $100 they receive for their beans at the first point of sale. Funds are used to develop markets, educate consumers, and research new ways to utilize and produce soybeans more efficiently. For more information, visit www.pasoybean.org.