NEARLY 500,000 acres of Monsanto's Vistive low-linolenic soybeans will be planted in the Midwest this year. The market for low-linolenic soybeans is growing because food companies want to lower unhealthy trans fats in food products. Soybeans with less linolenic acid reduce or eliminate the need for partial hydrogenation, which is the process that produces the trans fat in the soybean oil.

Last year was the first year the Vistive soybeans were planted. According to Monsanto, processors are currently paying farmers a premium of $0.25 to $0.45/bu. for Vistive soybeans. Processors involved in the program this year include Ag Processing Inc., ADM, Cargill Inc., CHS, Zeeland Farms and Minnesota Soybean Processors.