ASA returns to Indiana farm where it was launched 100 years ago
CAMDEN, Ind. (August 4, 2020) — The Indiana Soybean Alliance (ISA) along with Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb, USDA Deputy Secretary Steve Censky, ag broadcaster Max Armstrong and many more gathered to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the American Soybean Association (ASA) on the same farm where it was launched a century ago. One highlight of the event, Gov. Holcomb dedicated a historical marker on the farm.
“This historical marker couldn’t be more well-deserved, because the seeds the Fouts Brothers planted here, through years of hard work and innovation, have yielded a bountiful harvest for generations of Americans,” Gov. Holcomb said. “As we look to the next 100 years, I’m confident our farmers will continue building on that success and accelerating that growth.”
Deputy Secretary Censky served as an ASA executive for 21 years prior to accepting his post at USDA three years ago. He discussed the value of the ASA to U.S. soybean farmers.
“The American Soybean Association has allowed the industry to prosper and become the world leader it is today,” said Deputy Secretary Censky. “USDA is pleased to continue being a partner with the association and its members, just as we were at Fouts farm 100 years ago at its creation.”
Celebrating this anniversary on the farm where it started was important to Hoosier farmers and ISA staff.
“The Indiana Soybean Alliance is pleased to join with many partners to host this celebration,” ISA Chair David Rodibaugh, who is a soybean farmer from rural Jasper County, Ind. said. “This year has brought innovative communication tools to advocacy efforts with ASA and with all levels of government. Together we will persevere as we continue to navigate rough waters in the form of trade issues, livestock diseases abroad and a demand-altering pandemic.”
The roots of ASA were formed when brothers Taylor, Noah and Finis Fouts hosted the “First Corn Belt Soybean Field Day” at their Soyland Farms operation in Camden, Ind. on Sept. 3, 1920. The event drew nearly 1,000 farmers and their families from six states who were interested in discovering more about this emerging new commodity called soybeans. The National Soybean Growers’ Association – later renamed the American Soybean Association – was formed that day. Taylor Fouts was elected as the first president of the association. In the century since that start on an Indiana soybean farm, ASA has continually been on the leading edge – focused on sustaining and improving the prospects and opportunities for profitability for U.S. soybean farmers.
“The ASA and the soybean industry itself has grown steady and strong during the past 100 years,” said Rensselaer, Ind., soybean farmer Kendell Culp, who is one of Indiana’s three ASA board members. “American soybean farmers should feel very proud of what has been accomplished, so far. And because of our history, we should feel confident in our future.”
Elisha Modisett Kemp, who is the state government and industry affairs leader for Corteva Agriscience, a world-leading seed company, is a direct descendent of Noah Fouts. She said her family has always been tied to agriculture, and they find satisfaction in their family’s history.
“Our family has prided itself on innovation, tradition and history. I come from a long line of farmers and agricultural enthusiasts who worked diligently to preserve the past and pass it on for future generations,” she said. “Now, 100 years later, I am working for one of the largest seed companies in the world. Every time I see a soybean field or attend an association meeting, I always have a smile inside knowing that my great-great grandfather and uncles were a key part in the work I do today. We are so grateful to the American Soybean Association and the Indiana Soybean Alliance for including our family in commemorating this historic occasion.”
The Indiana Soybean Alliance works to enhance the viability of Indiana soybean farmers through the effective and efficient investment of soybean checkoff funds and the development of sound policies that protect and promote the interest of Indiana soybean farmers. The ISA works to build new markets for soybeans through the promotion of grain marketing, livestock, aquaculture, production research, biofuels, environmental programs, and new uses for soybeans. ISA is led by an elected farmer board that directs investments of the soybean checkoff funds on behalf of more than 28,000 Indiana soybean farmers and promotes policies on behalf of more than 700 dues-paying members. Learn more at www.indianasoybean.com
This communication was not funded with Indiana corn or soybean checkoff dollars.