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Evening Edition | Tuesday, August 16, 2022

In tonight's Evening Edition, read about misconceptions of cover crops, Benson Hill's new soy crush facility, and the latest carbon pipeline update in Iowa.

Cover Crops

Editor Laurie Bedord writes, "Depending on the field, cover crops can reduce soil erosion and compaction, improve water infiltration and storage within the soil profile, increase weed and pest suppression, and enhance nutrient cycling."

Even though the regenerative approach can provide a wide range of benefits, only about 4% of U.S. cropland is planted with cover crops, according to the latest ag census.

Misconceptions about cover crops, says Thomas Fawcett, director, environmental resources and precision ag, at Heartland Co-op, are caused in part by the fact that it’s not a straightforward system.

Soy Crush Facility

Editor Alex Gray reports that Benson Hill has acquired a soy crush facility in Creston, Iowa, to bring its operations closer to farmers.

The company announced it acquired ZFS Creston, a food grade white flake and soy flour manufacturing operation, in January for approximately $102 million. 

“I'm just so proud that we're able to do [work] in a closed-loop, identity-preserved model here in Iowa with Iowa farmers who can, just down the street, produce something,” says Matt Crisp, CEO of Benson Hill. “And then out here, have that delivered to food companies directly.”

Carbon Dioxide Pipeline

An Iowa District Court judge ruled Monday that the Iowa Utilities Board (IUB) must make the list of landowners likely to be affected by the Summit Carbon Solutions carbon dioxide pipeline available to the public within 14 days.

The Iowa-based company wants to build a 2,000-mile pipeline to take carbon dioxide off the stacks of ethanol plants and transport it to North Dakota, where it would be stored permanently underground.

About 60% of affected landowners have refused to grant Summit pipeline easements.

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