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ILLINOIS SOYBEAN ASSN CELEBRATES ITS 50TH ANNIVERSARY
Illinois AgriNews reports:

The Illinois Soybean Association has been celebrating the organization's 50th anniversary during the last year and will officially commemorate the milestone July 31 with an evening reception in Champaign.

ISA, formerly the Land of Lincoln Soybean Association, was officially formed in 1964 by a small group of Champaign County farmers and researchers to provide representation for soybean growers.

"During the last year, we have been remembering 50 years of the association along with 100 years of Illinois soybean production," said Don Guinnip, soybean farmer from Marshall, ISA director and chair of the ISA Anniversary Committee.

"We are embracing the past, our legacy of leadership, market development and soybean production in Illinois, and envisioning the future, our goal of using 600 million bushels of Illinois soybeans by 2020."

Illinois soybean farmers have a long and successful history. The volume of Illinois production has grown from less than 100,000 bushels in the early years to more than 460 million bushels today, making Illinois the top soybean production state in the nation.

Soybean acreage has risen from just 2,000 acres 100 years ago to about 10 million acres, or more than one-fourth of the state's land mass.

Illinois soybeans generate more than $6 billion per year in direct sales alone. The economic impact is multiplied by Illinois processing, livestock and transportation industries.

ISA members and guests will celebrate on the University of Illinois campus as part of ISA's annual meeting.

A short program will include comments from Bob Hauser, University of Illinois College of ACES dean; Ray Gaesser, American Soybean Association president; John Becherer, United Soybean Board CEO; David Erickson, Illinois Farm Bureau vice president; Parry Dixon, ADM; and Illinois Department of Agriculture Director Bob Flider.

ISA Chairman Bill Raben will offer closing remarks and a special 50th anniversary video will be shown.

The ISA represents more than 45,000 soybean farmers in Illinois through the state soybean checkoff and membership efforts. The checkoff funds market development, soybean production and profitability research, promotion, issues management and analysis, communications and education.

Membership and advocacy efforts support Illinois soybean farmer interests in local areas, Springfield and Washington, D.C.

ISA programs are designed to ensure Illinois soy is the highest quality, most dependable, sustainable and competitive in the global marketplace. For more information, visit the website www.ilsoy.org.


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