Soybean Rust Fast Track is Fast

Brian Lang, Field Specialist/Crops, Northeast Iowa


There is great concern among the farming community over the potential for soybean rust to reach Iowa.  Iowa State University (ISU) coordinated the Fast Track system to increase the speed and accuracy of diagnosing soybean rust.  Iowa producers submit samples to an Iowa First Detector who will then examine the samples and submit them to an Iowa Triage Team Member, if warranted.  This process ensures that the sample is reviewed quickly and alerts the ISU Plant Disease Clinic that suspect samples are being submitted.


On July 14, 2005, Dennis D. Kopp, Assistant Administrator of Program & Analysis
USDA/CSREES, spotted some suspicious soybean leaf symptoms in a field near the Dubuque Airport in northeast Iowa.  He brought a sample to the Dubuque County Extension office around 9:00 a.m.  The ISU Extension Crop Specialist for northeast Iowa was informed of the plant sample by cellular phone, and reached the Extension office by 11:00 a.m.  He proceeded to the actual field site and collected a proper sample for analysis by the ISU Plant Disease Clinic in Ames.  The Clinic received the sample by 8:00 a.m. on July 15, analyzed the sample, and reported their findings by email to all concerned parties.


Even though the sample was found to be negative for soybean rust, what was important was that the Fast Track system was in action evaluating the sample within 24 hours.   Dennis Kopp had commented, “Thank you for this excellent follow-up.  I am an entomologist by training. The yellow spots really stood out. I stopped and took the small sample and then stopped by the Dubuque Extension office.   I am pleased at your rapid follow-up and quite relieved at the diagnosis.  I commend you in your thorough coverage of this issue and for completing the loop to me, with your e-mail.”

August 22, 2005
142 -- Integrated Pest and Crop Management

Page last updated: July 9, 2006
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