AMS-GD-2020-37 - Soybean

  1. Can you still determine the percentage of Purple Mottled or Stained (PMS) when determining if a sample is PMS.

    Effective September 1, 1994, PMS became a special grade and the grade limitation on PMS soybeans was eliminated. When determining whether a sample is PMS, the only approved method is the applicable interpretive line print. However, upon request, a percentage may be determined on a representative portion of 125 grams. Since the value of PMS affected soybeans vary according to customer preference/needs, the interpretation for individual soybeans will be adjusted to accommodate those preferences/needs. If requests become routine and widespread, FGIS will develop an appropriate VRI for this determination.
  1. Are hail affected soybeans considered damage?

    Yes. Currently, there is not an VRI, but it is considered damaged when, in the cross-section, at least 1/4 of the surface area meets the color intensity of VRI-3.0, Green Damage.
  2. Does a dust suppressant, such as mineral oil, affect the odor of soybeans when added in excessive concentration?

    If the dust suppressant is evident when determining odor the sample would be made commercially objectionable foreign odor (COFO).
  1. Is there any instance in which “smoke” odors in soybeans can be considered “COFO” without evidence of fire-burnt material in the sample/lot?

    Yes, provided the inspector has information indicating that the grain was involved in a fire which is responsible for the contamination odor. This policy also applies to the other USGSA inspected oilseeds.
  1. What do the large soybeans (Edible soybeans) and small soybeans (Monk soybeans) function as?

    They are graded under the USGSA and are classed as either Yellow soybeans or Mixed soybeans.
  2. Should soybeans containing a soybean meal odor be considered okay or COFO?

    While the odor is not common in the “raw” product it is related and does not, in and of itself, render the beans unfit for normal commercial usage. Consequently, soybean meal odors would be considered “okay.”
  3. When you have distinguishable soybean meal odor in other grains what odor is applied?

  4. When soybeans are discolored by the growth of a fungus and dirt, which Interpretive Line Print (ILP) should be used?

    Use the ILP for which the majority of the soybeans are discolored.
  1. What do soybeans which have a blue/green or pinkish-purple colorant applied to the seed coat function as when found in soybeans?

    Unknown foreign substance. If a sample contains 4 or more soybeans with blue/green or pinkish-purple colorant, the sample will grade U.S. Sample grade.
  1. Are Laredo Hay Beans graded under the U. S. Grain Standards as Soybeans?

    Yes. Although Laredo Hay Beans are usually grown as forage/hay they are graded as Soybeans because they have the scientific name (Glycine max (L.) merr.). Laredo Hay Beans are small, flat, black soybeans and are to be classed as Mixed soybeans. When blended with Yellow soybeans, they function as Soybeans of Other Colors.
  2. In recent years we have seen soybeans that have cracked and discolored seed coats. The seed coat color (yellow/gold) is of a different color that is shown on SB-12.0, Soybeans of Other Colors (SBOC). Do these types of Soybeans still function as SBOC? The image was not intended to serve as a visual reference for minimum color intensity. 

    Yes. Examples of these types of discolored soybeans were sent to the Seed Science Center at Iowa State University for analysis. Their opinion was the soybeans had imbibed too much moisture at some point then were dried back down again creating the cracked seed coats and discoloration. In April, 2003, Field Offices were sent an image to illustrate this condition, but is not intended to serve as the visual reference for color intensity. Instead, refer to VRI – SB - 12.0 Soybeans of Other Colors for the official interpretation.
  3. Program Notice, PN-02-11 (12/02/02), “Stinkbug Damage Determination” improved the efficiency of determining heavily stinkbug-damaged soybeans by offering inspectors the option of using a reduced portion. However, the notice officially expired 12-02-03. Is the option to use this alternative procedure still permitted for those wishing to use it?

  4. If a submitted sample of 800 grams is offered for full grade inspection and the applicant specifically requests that the Test Weight (TW) determination not be performed can you still apply a numerical grade?

    No. Factors other than test weight are to be determined on the basis of 1000 grams (e.g., sample grade, foreign material), or within a reasonable proximity of 1000 grams. Consequently, submitted samples weighing less than 900 grams shall be restricted to a factor-only inspection.
  5. When determining the percent of cracked seed coats, should soybeans in which one of more of the soybeans’ 3 seed coat layers has separated function as a cracked seed coat, even though the cotyledon is not exposed?

    Yes. Requestors of this information are just as concerned with the soybeans’ external appearance and the negative affect it can have on commercial market value as they are with actual cotyledon exposure and related quality vulnerabilities (e.g., disease). As such, any obvious separation of the seed coat gives cause to consider the seed coat cracked.
  6. If an applicant requests a review inspection for Heat Damage (HT) only what result is shown for Damaged Kernels (total)(DKT)?

    Since HT is included in DKT and performed on the same portion a new analysis for HT and DKT would have to be performed. The new analysis for HT and DKT would supersede the previous result.


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