Discover Soileos Webinar: You have questions - We have answers

We have had some great questions come in following our Discover Soileos Webinar and inline with transparency we want to share our answers.

1. "The ROI was vague...it seemed to me you are using the price range of $15-$16/ac for 15lbs of Zinc product?"

Our Answer: If farmers were making decisions today, these would be the prices they could lock in. We considered the daily reports in Ontario as our reference price for this.

For pricing on our product, thanks to some improvements in the synthesis and scale of the manufacturing process. We’re recommending a 10 lb/acre application and a cost per acre at 10$/acre.

In wheat, this year despite the drought, we saw 2-3 bu/gain on 3 of 4 sites in a drought year.  At 10$/bu, and 10$/acre that’s in the right ballpark for a 2X ROI. 

In corn, we saw 4-5 bu/ac increases on multiple sites, with 7/9 trials resulting in a win for Soileos. Across all our trials from all years, this is more like 8 bu/ac.  At 4-5 bu/ac we're still talking about an extra 30-40$ acre for a product that cost 12$. 

In terms of buyer perception it is an expensive price point, but not unachievable. EDTA liquid starters for zinc are typically in that 10$/acre range, for a .25 lb of actual zinc, where a 10 lbs. application of Soileos - Zn delivers 1.0 lbs of actual.

Because of the nature of cellulose decomposition in different environments (micro and macro) we think the Soileos 1.0 lbs actual could build the soil Zn profile in some regions / parts of fields resulting in multi year efficacy and/or field specific variable rate applications resulting in an overall lower application rate and hence lower cost to the farmer. There may also be a carbon play with the product which could also improve the ROI. This is ongoing research for us.

Here is the table we shared during the webinar: 

Crop

Commodity Price

(CAD)

Expected Yield Advantage

(bu/ac)

Potential Net Gain

(CAD/ac)

Corn

$ 6.60

7 to 10

$ 34 to $ 53

Wheat

$ 9.60

3 to 4

$ 15 to $ 24

Soybean

$ 15.80

2 to 3

$ 20 to $ 35

2. "Can you elaborate on what you are noticing for pH, texture, OM, and Zn levels - for example are you seeing lower, or better responses? The Indiana trial result was astronomical, what were the soil characteristics that Laura alluded to that led to that?"

Our Answer: On SWAT maps, we saw some interesting variations, but 1 year of data in a drought is not really enough to make any sort of evaluation. We’d be happy to share some more interesting observations, but we need more data over more time and in more environments.  

In terms of identifying where it didn’t work as well, we did see the strong correlation between early season moisture and a yield response.  We’ve also seen great results on a variety of pH, OM, and micronutrient levels over the past 3 years. We think there could be a few reasons for this improvement in performance in a variety of conditions.

One reason is the products novel mode of action which results in “on-time delivery” of nutrients which we think could promote an epigenetic effect on a plant. Another is the product works independent of environmental factors such as pH and OM which seems to impact traditional micronutrient products. Another could also be that current soil testing technology overestimates the concentrations of bioavailable micronutrients. Our data shows that our products perform well even when traditional soil tests show high or even elevated levels of micronutrients. 

We are also thinking that where Soileos works (seemingly in most environmental conditions) is not as important as “where does Soileos offer the most advantage” to the grower.  We definitely see great results on higher pH soils that normally limit micronutrient availability and also where traditional products do not work well. For example in the Indiana corn trial where we saw the great result, the soil tested at low Zn (1 ppm zinc test via a mehlich-3 extraction).  As we move forward we may find that the product provides the greatest ROI on more marginal farmland / fields.

3. There was a mention of performance guarantees, what are they?
Our Answer: Check out our crop performance guarantees here:
Soileos for Soy Soileos for WheatSoileos for Corn

4. You guys allude to seed coating. I am all for seed coating, but does that not get outside your guys core value prop and message?

Our Answer: We have done preliminary research on seed and fertilizer coatings and we are certain this is something we can accomplish. For seed coatings we are looking at providing bioavailable nutrients to get the crop off to the best start - not necessarily provide the whole season’s worth. If we look at lower use micros, like copper/molybedenum or even some of the non-essential but linked to soil nitrogen cycling like cobalt, vanadium etc.. we could be providing much more of a whole-season need with the seed dressing.

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