Wednesday, December 20, 2006

It's not just ethanol that's threatening...

The soy industry is dealing with significant disillusionment among nutritionists and medical professionals regarding the manifold health claims associated with soy consumption.
Soy is a bean. That much we know.

But is soy a miracle worker that protects us from cancer, heart disease, bone loss and hot flashes? Or is it an overrated and menacing little legume that affects the thyroid and raises certain cancer risk and is found in nearly every processed food? [More of a must-read article for any soybean grower]

Following the fad-o-the-month in the food industry is a short-term business plan. Now with competition for acres from corn, and declining consumer infatuation (admittedly a small portion of soy consumption, but widely touted), and the flood of DDG's into the protein market, the soy industry faces a crossroads here in the US.

Meanwhile sunflower growers are being wooed like homecoming queens as processors have sold oil to transfat-fighting food makers that they had assumed would come from acres they had in their pockets. Not so fast.

When I was in North Dakota earlier this month (insert your Ole joke here), growers were chortling about skyrocketing contract offers to grow sunflowers. Processors were finally figuring out what the scarcity of 85-day corn meant.

There may be only one solution for the soybean producer: burn it.

Hey, it worked for corn!

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