Greencastle farmer appointed to state soybean board

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot

Greencastle livestock and soybean producer Steven Hykes was appointed as a member of the Pennsylvania Soybean Promotion Board at the board’s August meeting.

 A 1992 graduate of Delaware Valley College with a B.S. in Agribusiness, Hykes and his wife, Lynn, operate a fifth-generation family-owned farm in Greencastle. They farm 750 acres of cropland, finish 3,200 head of hogs, and raise 260 replacement heifers for three dairy farms. The Hykes have three children, Nathan, 17; Hannah, 16; and Sammy, 13.

Hykes also serves as president of the Board of Directors for the Farmers Union Co-op in Greencastle.

“Coming from a densely populated livestock area, I see the important role soybeans play in the diets of various animals,” said Hykes. “And as a soybean grower, I appreciate what the PA Soybean Board has done in promoting soybeans both in expanding markets and in research trials to help us as producers.”

PA Soybean Promotion Board Chair Daryl Alge said, “Steve brings with him the perspective not only of a soybean grower, but also of a livestock producer. Animal agriculture is the number one domestic customer for soybeans, with about 98 percent of our output going for this purpose, so we feel Steve’s perspective will be a real asset to the board.”

The PA Soybean Promotion Board is a farmer-controlled board responsible for managing Pennsylvania’s share of funds received from the nationwide Soybean Checkoff program. There are currently nine members on the board. Checkoff funds are used for implementing a program of promotion, research, consumer information, and industry information designed to strengthen the soybean industry's position in the marketplace, to maintain and expand existing domestic and foreign markets and uses for soybeans and soybean products, and to develop new markets and uses for soybeans and soybean products.

The funding is available under an assessment program, approved by Congress in 1990, under which soybean farmers contribute 50 cents of every $100 they receive for their beans at the first point of sale. Funds are used to develop markets, educate consumers, and research new ways to utilize and produce soybeans more efficiently.