Corteva Agriscience, and Bunge have made significant advancements in the development of more nutritious soybean meal for the animal feed industry, specifically suited for poultry, swine and aqua feed. The companies have a multi-year collaboration to develop and commercialize soybean varieties that can create a potential new value stream opportunity for soybean farmers while giving feed compounders a new option to reduce their use of synthetic additives, lower costs, and shrink their carbon footprint.
Through this collaboration, Corteva is leveraging its expertise in germplasm, gene editing, and traits discovery to develop soybean varieties with greater protein content, optimized amino acid profiles, and lower levels of anti-nutritional factors. Early field trial research has confirmed Corteva’s approach to boosting protein levels and significantly increasing the proportion of the key amino acids methionine and lysine in the soybean while maintaining high field and oil yields.
“The future of food production hinges on developing new tools and technology to help farmers sustainably meet their production goals,” said Dr. Tom Greene, vice president of biotechnology at Corteva Agriscience. “Our collaboration with Bunge aligns with our commitment to sustainable innovation while supporting improved animal performance and greater value opportunities for livestock and row crop farmers. Our next step is to bring the higher-protein, enhanced-amino acid profile into a commercial soybean variety that offers the best value for soybean farmers.”
Bunge will be the exclusive processor of the oilseed as well as exclusive merchandiser of the high-value meal and oil, leveraging its deep farmer relationships and existing facilities to source the oilseed and deliver incremental value to farmers, feed compounders and animal protein producers.
Globally, sales of synthetic methionine and lysine for feed applications exceed $10 billion annually, and the market is expected to grow with underlying animal protein demand.
“As a global leader in oilseed processing, we are uniquely positioned to leverage upstream and downstream partnerships with leading and innovative industry players to unlock value for our farmers and customers. We are very pleased by the early results of this collaboration with Corteva,” said Kaleb Belzer, vice president of protein ingredients at Bunge. “Naturally over-expressing methionine and lysine will make soybean meal an even better ingredient for our feed customers, enabling them to significantly reduce or even eliminate the use of expensive synthetic additives and to cut the carbon emissions associated with those supply chains, which is multiples larger than that of soybean meal.”
The companies expect to commercialize these soybean varieties by late this decade.