The top agriculture export is literally pounding the pavement as an ingredient in extending the life of the Minnesota’s roads. RePLAY Agricultural Oil Seal and Preservation Agent contains 56 percent soybean oil, and has shown promise over the past several years in Hutchinson, Minnesota.
The biobased sealant penetrates the asphalt deeper than many other products, helping to reverse the oxidation process below the surface and potentially repairing hairline cracks on the surface.
“With soybeans being such a large crop in Minnesota, this is a promising application of the commodity in the significant transportation market,” says Mike Youngerberg of the Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council.
RePLAY has been used as a sealant on approximately 118,000 lane miles in Minnesota. The product uses about 100 bushels of soybeans per lane mile. Since it is a clear, non-petroleum-based sealant, the lines on the roads do not have to be repainted, a significant savings of time and money. RePLAY not only extends the life of asphalt surfaces, but cuts down on labor costs, reduces road closures during application, and eliminates the harmful fumes of petroleum products used for road maintenance.
Each year, Minnesota farmers produce more than 3 billion bushels of soybeans. While about half is kept close to home to be processed as soybean meal to feed livestock, the soy oil is also used to produce more than 70 million gallons of biodiesel fuel. The other half is shipped to overseas markets. Industrial use of soybeans is a small but growing market.
“RePLAY has been used across the United States and in 38 other countries in Europe, Asia, Africa and North America,” says Youngerberg. “It has really shown promise in extending the life of a highway, thus saving taxpayer dollars. I’m excited that an agriculture commodity can be a part of road preservation not only in this state, but around the world.”
RePLAY is manufactured by BioSpan Technologies, Inc., of Washington, Missouri. The research development of RePLAY was funded with farmer checkoff dollars, invested to identify markets and uses for Minnesota soybeans.