Scaboo Selected to Lead Soybean Breeding Efforts at MU, Program Fully Funded by Farmers’ Checkoff Contributions

Missouri soybean farmers’ efforts to improve the quality, yields and value of the Show-Me State’s top cash crop received a strong vote of confidence this week as Dr. Andrew Scaboo accepted a new position as Assistant Research Professor in soybean breeding in the Division of Plant Sciences within the University of Missouri’s College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources. Scaboo will continue to lead the Northern Missouri Soybean Breeding Program, as he has since joining the team in Missouri in 2012.

“The partnership between growers and the University really drives the research happening in Missouri,” Scaboo said. “I look forward to the opportunity to contribute to Missouri’s long history of research into developing soybean varieties with improved agronomic and seed composition traits such as soybean cyst nematode resistance and high oleic soybeans, and I thank everyone involved for their support in helping to expand the soybean breeding program at the University of Missouri.”

The faculty position, as well as the breeding program, is fully funded by the Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council (MSMC) and farmers’ contributions to the soybean checkoff. Scaboo’s soybean breeding program currently includes four research specialists and technicians, dedicated field and laboratory space and production equipment, as well as opportunities for graduate students and undergraduate interns.

“This program builds upon our efforts to ensure Missouri farmers have access to the most up-to-date research information and continue to benefit from new market opportunities for their soybeans,” said MSMC chairman David Lueck of Alma. “The Northern Missouri Soybean Breeding Program and the work being done by this team stands to directly improve Missouri soybean growers’ position in the marketplace and to continue to grow our state’s soybean industry.”

Scaboo’s research centers around developing soybean varieties for northern Missouri with improved genetics yield potential, high oleic oil content, nematode resistance and abiotic (drought and flood) and biotic stress tolerance. Through the role he has held since 2012 leading the Northern Missouri Soybean Breeding Program, he has overseen more than 45,000 field test plots in his first two years of research supported by Missouri soybean farmers and their checkoff.

Prior to joining the team at the University of Missouri in 2012 as a senior research scientist, Scaboo worked as a post-doctoral Research Geneticist with the USDA-ARS soybean breeding program at North Carolina State University. He previously earned Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees from the University of Tennessee, and his doctorate at University of Arkansas.

The Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council is a statewide, farmer-led organization working to improve opportunities for Missouri soybean farmers through a combination of research, outreach, education and market development efforts. To learn more, visit the Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council online at mosoy.org.