The cost of soybean production in the U.S. has soared by 157% since 1997, while seed cost rose by 260% according to Bryn Swearingen and Kate Vaiknoras with the USDA Economic Research Service.

According to their report, farms spent an average of $19.72 per acre on soybean seeds, and the total production cost was $245.83 per acre in 1997. In 2023, the price of seed increased to $71.03 per acre and production costs rose to $632.22 per acre.

Swearingen and Vaiknoras explain that changes in planting methods, seeding technologies and seed quality are responsible for a significant portion of the increase. Genetically engineered soybean seeds first appeared in the mid-1990s. This was soon followed by soybeans with stacked resistance to multiple herbicides and pesticides. These combined technologies have resulted in higher quality and more reliable seeds.

Read more about increased soybean production costs here.