Midwest Soybean Farmers' Perceptions and Management of Glyphosate Weed Resistance

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2017-04-11
Authors
Southard, Emily
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Sociology
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Sociology
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Soybeans are the second most grown crop in the US, and Iowa is the top soy producing state. However, soybean farmers are facing a major problem-- weed resistance to the herbicide glyphosate. Glyphosate, sold under the tradename RoundUp, is a popular herbicide that many soybean farmers have relied on exclusively for weed control since the introduction of genetically modified glyphosate tolerant soybeans (RoundUp Ready Soybeans) in 1996. A growing number of weeds have evolved to resist glyphosate, and this resistance is challenging the economic and environmental sustainability of soy production. In March, 2016 a mail and internet survey was administered to 2,400 soybean growers in Iowa, Indiana and Illinois. The survey focused on understanding soybean grower’s beliefs, attitudes, and practices concerning glyphosate weed resistance and genetically modified crops. This presentation will share the results of this survey, including the finding of dissonance between respondent’s beliefs that weed management should become more integrated, and the desire to find a more cost-effective and time-saving solution to glyphosate resistance. Based on our findings, we conclude that public and private support needs to be provided to farmers to help them adopt integrated weed management practices that can prevent herbicide resistance from occurring with other herbicides.

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