This presentation was recorded at the 2024 Soybean Summit on February 1st in Champaign, IL.

Over the past decade, we’ve seen a substantial increase in soybean yields. These gains can be attributed to genetic improvements as well as a number of widely adopted agronomic strategies surrounding planting date, seed treatments and foliar protection. While the gains have been significant, as growers, we are constantly searching for the next improvement in productivity. In this session, we’ll learn more about a novel approach to soybean variety characterization that can more accurately inform placement decisions and provide insight into variety-specific management, making the connection between branches and bushels.

AJ Woodyard is the research agronomy lead with Ag Ingenuity Partners, the research division of Advanced Agrilytics. In that role, he is responsible for bringing innovative research concepts and performance insights to industry partners. With his previous work with high-yield growers across the U.S. and unique experience with ultra-early planted, high-management soybeans, AJ brings a practical approach to field-scale spatial research. He holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree from the University of Illinois in crop and weed sciences and remains involved in his family farming operation in East Central Illinois, bringing his research concepts back home.

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About the Author: Kelsey Litchfield

Kelsey Litchfield is the Agronomic Outreach Specialist for the Illinois Soybean Association. In her role, she manages ILSoyAdvisor media platforms and assists the agronomy team with events and field days. A native of Rio, IL, Kelsey earned her bachelor’s degree from University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 2017 where she double majored in Agricultural Communications and Broadcast Journalism.

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