Polk County Soybean/Corn Board donates soy oil tires to sheriff's office

Times Report
Left to right, Wayne Olson (Fosston), Mike Skaug (Beltrami), Kevin Krueger (East Grand Forks), Rick Roed (Fosston).

Polk County farmers and their soybean checkoff dollars are giving back to local first responders this summer, and promoting the diverse uses of soybeans at the same time.

The Polk County Soybean/Corn  Board joined the Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council (MSR&PC) and its 44 organized counties by utilizing Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company’s line of soy-oil tires to spotlight value-added products while also supporting law enforcement agencies in their communities. 

Each organized county (Minnesota is the only state to support county-level soybean programs) has the opportunity to donate a full set of Goodyear’s soy-based Eagle Enforcer All Weather tires – designed specifically for first responder vehicles traversing rugged climates like Minnesota’s – to their county sheriff’s office.

“The Polk County Sheriff’s Office is happy to except the donation of four Goodyear soy-based Eagle Enforcer All Weather tires,” said Polk County Sheriff James Tadman. “We are pleased to partner with the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council exploring new options to keep our deputies safe while protecting the citizens of Polk County.”

With COVID-19 gathering restrictions relaxing, the timing is ideal for the Council to drive its grassroots county program forward after a year marked by cancelled and postponed events. Promoting soybean oil via checkoff investments in renewable technology is the perfect vehicle to showcase the Council’s ongoing mission to improve farmer profitability by promoting value-added products, said MSR&PC Director Cole Trebesch.  

“There’s a high level of enthusiasm with our county boards for this campaign,” Trebesch said. “We all know summertime is fleeting in Minnesota, and after the hardships of the past year, our county boards are champing at the bit to promote our commodities and checkoff investments.”

Since 2017, Goodyear, supported by United Soybean Board checkoff investments, has released four lines of tires with soybean oil compounds: Assurance WeatherReady, Eagle Enforcer All Weather, Eagle Exhilarate and Assurance Comfort Drive. The Akron, Ohio-based company has increased its use of soybeans by 73% since 2018 and pledged to fully replace all of its petroleum-driven oils with soybean oil by 2040. The Enforcer tires will appeal to more than just law enforcement but also state fleets and municipalities, increasing demand for soybean grown in Minnesota.

In addition to the county promotion, the Council will give away two sets of Goodyear’s Assurance WeatherReady tires – also made with 100% soybean oil – at this year’s Farmfest (Aug. 3-5) and Big Iron (Sept 13-15). A third set of the WeatherReady tires, which are made for everyday vehicles, are available through an online promotion that allows farmers to nominate their favorite nonprofits.  

“I feel we are helping out our law enforcement with these tires and also promoting soybeans in another use, in our everyday lives,” said Kevin Krueger, president of the Polk County Soybean – Corn Growers.