Room to improve the corn/soybean system
An agronomist who specializes in soybean production sees room for improvement.
Seth Naeve with the University of Minnesota says he’s very pro-soybean, but even more pro-farmer.
He tells Brownfield farmers in a corn/soybean rotation need to take a long view if they hope to stay on the land for years to come.
“There are some sensitivities around producing soybeans. It’s a low-carbon, low-residue crop that really opens us up for things like erosion.”
Naeve says there’s been tremendous improvement in soil conservation over the past century.
“But there’s a long ways to go. So longer rotations, cover (crops), but frankly for Minnesota folks and those in the northern states, for me it’s all about continuing to reduce tillage out there.”
He calls organic matter the measure of soil quality and soil health. And Naeve says farmers must prioritize carbon not only as a credit, but for soil moisture holding and nutrient mineralization.