Breeding soybean is a fascinating pursuit. There is always some new angle, some new tool to deploy, some new end use to target. And I value the challenge. It never gets boring.
There are folks among us who are tasked with finding new uses for things… things such as soybeans. There are new spins on old food items. New food items altogether, and then a whole host of non-food items. For the last few decades increases in the yield of soybean have outpaced increases in population. As a result the supply too quickly outpaces demand and the price declines. Find other end uses and the demand can be stimulated. Prices can stabilize.
The company I work for sells soybean as a raw material to make foods such as tofu, soymilk, meso, and soy sauce. Our quality control lab keeps a small sample of each lot of soybean that is shipped. For us, new uses are all about the food side… the human food side. But every now and then someone gets an idea, something creative, something offbeat. And so here I offer you a photo of such an idea. Someone passing through the QC lab picked up one of the sample containers and marked the top of the jar. And a new use is born!
If anyone just has to have a soybean paperweight, I can make it happen. Leave a note in the comments and we can discuss prices and availability. If the new uses folks at the United Soybean Board get wind of this – a hand writing sample will exonerate me. And a list of potentially guilty creative types will be difficult to produce… but you can rest assured our R&D group is hard at work breeding new varieties to fill future paperweight containers. It’s the least we can do.