Deere & Co. expects to use more soy-based resins on its John Deere farm vehicles, and may use the materials on models produced in Germany and Brazil.
Since 1997, Moline, Ill.-based Deere has developed soy-based resin parts for baler doors, tractor roofs and other parts. Most recently, the firm used the natural materials on the hoods of two tractor models in 2004, said John Cerny, a retired Deere engineer who still works with the firm as an adviser with the United Soybean Board.
Cerny attended Commercializing Bioresins 2005 in Atlanta.
On those projects, Deere has worked with materials suppliers Ashland Chemical Inc., Bayer Corp. and Urethane Soy Systems and with injection molders Ashley Industrial Molding Inc., GI Plastek and Budd Co.
Ashley alone plans to use 1.1 million pounds of renewable natural materials this year in projects for Deere and competitor CNH Global NV.
Cerny said introducing soy-based parts in Germany and Brazil is still in its early stages, mainly because of difficulties in using the materials in large-scale production in those countries.