Soy Central

Facts & Resources on All Things Soybeans

Biodiesel, a renewable fuel made in part from soybeans, can reduce your carbon footprint by at least 50%.

58% of Illinois soybean acres are farmed with some form of conservation tillage, which leaves stalks and plant matter from the previous year's harvest on the ground to prevent soil erosion and protect water quality.

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To protect crops, the amount of chemical a soybean farmer needs to spray over an acre - or the area of a football field - is about as much as a can of soda. The rest is water.

Pigs consume the most Illinois soybeans. Soybeans contain all eight essential amino acids, creating protein-packed soybean meal that pigs love.

Small Illinois bean Big Chicago impact
Soy Sources
Find more information, educational tools and activities about soybeans, food and farming.
  • Stories from the Field
    The Soy in the City Story
    Soy in the City highlights the positive impact soybeans have on everyday life in Chicago. Whether it’s through food, biodiesel, job creation or transportation, soybeans have a bigger impact than you might think. See more of the surprising uses of soybeans around the city.
  • Stories from the Field
    From Pod to Plate
    Follow along as a soybean seed evolves from pod to plate … and the many other products that impact your life every day and those of people around the world. In this first episode, learn about a planter and how it’s used to precisely plant soybeans on an Illinois farm.
  • Stories from the Field
    B20 Club member uses soybean oil to reduce environmental impact
    The Chicago Parks District (CPD) takes recycling to a whole new level - and it starts with vegetable oil from Chicago-area restaurants. The recycled vegetable oil, made mostly from soybeans, is converted into biodiesel to fuel its vehicles. CPD is a member of the B20 Club, a partnership between ISA and the American Lung Association in Illinois that promotes clean air in Illinois communities and supports Illinois farmers growing soybeans used to make biodiesel, a renewable fuel. By operating 300+ vehicles on biodiesel, CPD is significantly reducing CO2 emissions. Keep up the great work, CPD.
  • Stories from the Field
    Community collaboration provides protein
    As part of the Soy in the City initiative to show Chicagoans how soybeans impact their daily lives, ISA partnered with State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D-Chicago Heights) to provide 800+ pounds of ground pork to the new Bloom Township Food Pantry. Soybean and pig farmers work together every day to produce quality food, with pigs eating 74% of the soybean meal fed in Illinois.

Meet a Soybean Farmer

  • I'm Carrie Winkelmann. My husband, Kyle, and I grow soybeans and corn in central Illinois while raising three children - Lydia, Grady, and Arlo.
  • Our farm equipment is smarter and more tech savvy than ever. This helps reduce human error and increase success while we plant, grow, and harvest soybeans.
  • We as farmers are continuously looking for ways to improve our soil. On our farm, we plant cover crops in the Fall to protect the soil so it's not lost to wind and water erosion during the winter.
  • If you have vegetable oil in your cupboard you're likely consuming soybean oil. Soybeans are in a lot of foods, like mayonnaise and salad dressing, and could have grown on an Illinois farm like ours.

Looking for More Information?

You can learn more about how Illinois soybeans are grown and used in many products that impact our lives daily or learn more about Illinois soybean farmers and their families by contacting ISA.