Free soybean cyst nematode tests available to farmers

Soil Sampling for Soybean Cyst Nematodes to Prevent Potential Yield Losses

Missouri farmers can submit two free tests to beat the soybean cyst nematode (SCN) by contacting their county University of Missouri Extension center or the SCN Diagnostics laboratory.

Testing soil before planting soybean is vital, says MU Extension plant pathologist Kaitlyn Bissonnette. SCN is the No. 1 soybean disease in the U.S. and Canada, with yield losses up to 30% per infected acre. Symptoms include stunted growth and yellowing, but yield loss can happen even when there are no visible symptoms, Bissonnette says.

Sample every three to five years, she says. Bissonnette gives instructions on how to sample at this link.  

SCN quickly began spreading through Missouri in the 1970s and gained a foothold in most of the state’s soybean-growing counties by the 1990s. SCN is easily transported in soil; cysts and eggs spread via equipment, water, or wind.

United Soybean Board checkoff dollars fund up to two free tests for Missouri farmers as part of SCN Coalition efforts to raise awareness of SCN. The SCN Coalition is a public-private partnership of university researchers, extension specialists, and industry representatives.

For more information, contact your local MU Extension center or the SCN Diagnostics lab at [email protected] or 573-884-9118. Sample submission forms are on the SCN Diagnostics website at

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