The Ontario Soybean Growers has pledged $15,000 over the next 10 years to support graduate-level research of interest to the soybean industry.
The group, which marks its 60th anniversary this year, on Thursday announced it would create the OSG Graduate Student Legacy Award, which will see $1,500 presented to one graduate student each year for the next 10 years.
“We created this Legacy Award in recognition of the vital role that research, innovation and market development play in driving sustainability back to soybean growers’ family farms,” said OSG chairman Leo Guilbeault, a grower from Belle River, east of Windsor.
Speaking during an event in London, Ont. on Thursday, Guilbeault emphasized that the OSG’s commitment will be carried forward into the new Grain Farmers of Ontario organization, when the province’s soy, corn and wheat growers’ groups merge into the new GFO later this year.
The group noted that since its inception in 1949 the number of soybean growers in the province has grown from 6,000 to 23,000. That expansion of acres across the province is due largely to the work of public researchers who developed soybean varieties specifically for Ontario, the group said.
Ontario soy growers planted 2.4 million acres to the crop in 2009, and expect to yield about 1.1 tonnes per acre, the group said.