Study: Biodiesel Helps Soybean & Livestock Farmers

John Davis

A study funded by the United Soybean Board (USB) and soybean checkoff shows shows that biodiesel is a big boost for soybean growers, as well as helping poultry and livestock farmers.

This news release from the USB says that, over the past five years, biodiesel added 27 cents a bushel to the price of soybeans, giving American soybean farmers another $2.7 billion in net returns:

The study also found good news for the U.S. soybean industry’s biggest customer, the U.S. animal agriculture sector, which uses nearly 98 percent of the domestic supply of U.S. soybean meal. The increased demand for soybean oil resulted in a larger supply of U.S. soybean meal, decreasing feed prices paid by U.S. poultry, livestock and fish farmers by between $16 and $48 per ton in marketing years 2005-2009.

“As a soybean farmer, I’m thrilled to see that biodiesel puts this much extra money back in our pockets,” says Jim Schriver, chair of USB’s Domestic Marketing program and a soybean farmer from Montpelier, Ind. “But the study also shows that biodiesel helps us support our best customers by making feed more affordable. Lower feed prices help U.S. animal farmers stay competitive.”

Soybean oil remains the dominant feedstock for biodiesel production, and the soybean checkoff funds a large portion of the research and promotion of biodiesel through the National Biodiesel Board. Much of this funding has been used on testing to prove biodiesel’s performance, economic and environmental benefits.

The release goes on to point out that biodiesel supports 20,000 American jobs, putting more than $800 million into tax coffers in 2009.

Biodiesel, Soybeans