Ag Processing Inc., a cooperative that is one of the largest soybean processing companies in the U.S., has announced it will be partnering with participating local member co-ops to offer contract production of Vistive low-linolenic soybeans at four of its soy processing plants for 2011 growing season.
AGP, the fourth largest soybean processor in the United States, will be processing Vistive variety soybeans at plant locations in Hastings, plus Eagle Grove, Iowa; Manning, Iowa; and Sgt. Bluff, Iowa. AGP will contract with area growers who are interested in producing the soybeans and delivering them to one of the AGP processing facilities.
AGP was one of the initial Vistive processors since this type of specialty soybean was first introduced to the marketplace in 2005 by Monsanto Company.
Vistive soybeans, developed through conventional breeding, contain 3% linolenic acid as compared to the typical 8% found in traditional soybeans. The result is a more stable soybean oil that does not need partial hydrogenation. The partial hydrogenation process produces trans-fatty acids (trans fats). Health conscious consumers and food companies want to avoid trans fats in foods.
"We are excited about our partnership with Monsanto, and the local co-ops which work with us, and the soybean farmers who will grow the beans as we offer a Vistive soybean production contract for the 2011 crop growing season," says Greg Twist, senior vice president of marketing and processing for AGP. "We continue to emphasize new ways to differentiate U.S. soybeans from commodity markets. Vistive soybeans are another excellent example of creating new market value for producers."
AGP will work in concert with its co-op members and their farmer owners to offer a price premium to farmers who grow Vistive soybeans under contract for the 2011 growing season. Growers can earn a premium of between 50 and 60 cents a bushel depending on which delivery option they choose, Twist says.
"As our nation continues to focus on healthier food choices, this program provides our food customers with healthier alternatives for the American consumer," says Cal Meyer, AGP vice present of processing for refined vegetable oils and renewable fuels.
AGP is owned by 181 local co-ops and five regional co-ops, representing over 250,000 farmers from 16 states.
More information about Vistive contract soybean production opportunities through member cooperatives for 2011 can be found on AGP's website www.agp.com.