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This article in AJ

  1. Vol. 96 No. 6, p. 1711-1718
    Received: Dec 22, 2003

    * Corresponding author(s): mpopp@uark.edu
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Early-Maturity Soybean in a Late-Maturity Environment

  1. M. Popp *a,
  2. J. Edwardsc,
  3. L. Purcellb and
  4. P. Manninga
  1. a Dep. of Agric. Econ. and Agribusiness, 217 Agriculture Bldg., Univ. of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701
    c Dep. of Plant and Soil Sci., 368 Agricultural Hall, Oklahoma State Univ., Stillwater, OK 74078
    b Dep. of Crop, Soil and Environ. Sci., 1366 W. Altheimer Dr., Univ. of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701


Over the last several years, farmers in the midsouthern USA have been planting earlier maturing soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.] cultivars. Maturity Group (MG) IV cultivars have become increasingly popular for reasons of drought avoidance and labor scheduling. Recently, research has been conducted to examine the agronomic characteristics and profitability of even earlier maturing cultivars. This study examines the economic considerations of MG 00 through MG IV soybean for two locations in Arkansas with different soil (silt loam vs. clayey soils) and weather conditions using both irrigated and nonirrigated production practices. Field trials were conducted over the period of 1999 to 2002. Net returns above direct and total expenses were calculated using cost of production estimates and experimental yields. Care was taken to isolate the impact of seasonal price effects as well as costs associated with irrigation, planting, and weed control as the remainder of production practices is similar across MG choice. Sensitivity analysis demonstrated that MG choice was driven mainly by yield differences and that seasonal price effects as well as changing seed cost, weed control practices, and irrigation costs had little impact. Producers may therefore choose to evaluate MG choice by following trends in yield potential. However, the analysis did not consider the farm-specific potential for labor cost savings that may occur due to changes in the timing of labor requirements. Further, the analysis does not explicitly consider seeding rate and glyphosate tolerance effects on MG choice.

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