Supply chain issues continue to cause disturbances as the U.S. IP soybean market has product but is finding it increasingly difficult to secure transportation to export to the countries with the highest demand.
As Canadian producers are working to fulfill contracts around the world, producers south of the border are looking to do the same yet, according to Rob Prather, with the Specialty Soya and Grains Alliance, procuring sufficient transportation is proving to be quite the challenge.
“The transportation struggles from the U.S. this year have been probably the biggest hurdle, we’ve received a lot of inquiries that we just simply can’t fill. We have the beans, and we have the buyers with the money, and we can’t fill them. Canada’s jumping in and supplying the businesses at a little bit of a higher rate than us, which is there’s nothing wrong with that the customers need beans, their their food needs to be in the retail shelves. So it’s a it’s a pretty hard struggle right now.”
Despite the Canadian market getting a little bit of a boost in the wake of the transportation issues being faced by the U.S., Prather pointed to the fact that both countries will have to do what they can to work together to supply the ever increasing demand for IP soybeans. As it sits currently, however, although there will always be a certain point of competition between countries and suppliers, Prather says the positive collaboration between the two has been fairly steady.
In addition to transportation, Prather says other hurdles the industry faces is money, associated risk, and as within any market, the unknowns that lie in the distance.
It’s not all tumultuous for the U.S. producers however, Prather says although exports to Japan and other countries isn’t going as smooth as they’d like, the demand for IP soybeans within the U.S. is starting to ramp up, allowing for much easier transportation solutions.
“The U.S. food demand is increasing. I think it’s a palette change kind of driven by some west coast populations, but we’re starting to see that move east in a pretty fast way. The younger generations are looking for something a little healthier, and a little closer to closer to the dirt if you if you know what I mean. And soy beans and tofu and soy milk kind of provide that direct connection.”
As far as growth of the industry is concerned, although the IP soybean market accounts for 10 per cent of the total soybean revenue in the U.S., they only account for five to six per cent of the total production acres, a number that Prather would like to see closer to 10 per cent.
“In order to get the input providers to really want to participate in the identity preserved arena, we need to get that that acre volume up to up over 10 per cent. Nobody wants five per cent of the market, right. But you might make some adjustments for 10 per cent of the market. And once that happens, I think you’ll see more adoptions, more people jumping in.”
Currently, there are approximately 3.5 million acres dedicated to IP soybeans in the U.S.