Project SOY (now project SOY Plus) is an annual contest that harnesses students' creative power to develop new products and marketing strategies for soybeans. In 1996, Project SOY – a joint initiative between a Guelph-based soybean seed company, First Line Seeds, led by industry pioneer and U of G alumnus Peter Hannam and the U of G - was introduced to help maintain the momentum of the soybean industry, raise the production and awareness of the crop and find diversified uses and markets for soybeans.
With an increasing desire to further agri-science and innovation, Project SOY evolved in scope to include other plant-based species – Project SOY Plus. Starting in the 2019-20 competition year, students had an opportunity to harness their creativity and innovative thinking across a broader scope of plant-based species.
New to 2023-2024, the competition is focusing on the theme: Circular Economy. Students are encouraged to bring ideas that look at ways to change the way we produce, consume, and recycle by devising products that support a sustainable future.
Project SOY Plus is promoted by a student program co-ordinator. The program is targeted to wide-range of disciplines and is open to those enrolled in diploma, undergraduate and graduate levels. Contest participants must register by the yearly intake deadline – either as part of course work or as an extracurricular activity – and may use University facilities as available or appropriate over the winter semester to complete projects for judging at a finale event typically held each March.
Students may enter individually or as a team. Each entry is encouraged to have a faculty or staff mentor.