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Pesticide Economics for Soybean

All pesticides [seed treatments (fungicides, insecticides, nematicides), foliar fungicides and insecticides] that are applied to soybean have a cost related to their use. Therefore, it is expected that their insertion into a production system will return more dollars/acre than they cost.

Thus, the application of any pesticide, whether it be a seed treatment or foliar-applied material, should have an established presence of a pest at an economic threshold for it to be justified and economical. However, thresholds of some pests such as those in the soil cannot be pre-determined, but rather are assumed to be present or are expected to be present at levels that will threaten the necessary establishment of a crop. Such is the case with soil-borne pests that are known to affect soybean establishment and early development.

The article linked here shows current estimated prices for various seed treatments and foliar fungicides and insecticides that are available for application to soybean to control the various pests that may require management in a growing season. These prices are used in conjunction with soybean yield results from referenced research articles to estimate profitability from using various seed treatment and foliar-applied pesticides. Results and conclusions from individual references are presented.

Composed by Larry G. Heatherly, May 2017, larryheatherly@bellsouth.net