It’s all about the bean
Taifun breeds new soybean varieties, specifically for tofu making
- 05 Apr 2021
Soybeans are our most important raw material, and they are crucial to the quality of our tofu. That’s why we are actively involved in soybean cultivation even before it starts: We run variety trials to select the choicest tofu soybeans, and we propagate them organically.
Taifun has been a certified seed producer of organic soybeans in Germany since 2005. That means that we ourselves – in cooperation with experienced farmers – produce the soybean seed for our contract cultivation. And that’s how we ensure that the seed is of the finest quality, free of GMOs and organic. Good seed comes from good varieties. We collaborate with the University of Hohenheim on breeding soybean varieties, and we participate in several research projects sponsored by the German Federal Government. So far, soybeans have mainly been cultivated in regions with a temperate climate and long summers, such as Southern Germany. But we aim to make it possible for organic tofu soybeans to be cultivated throughout Germany. To this end, we have developed cold-resistant soybean cultivars and tested them in our laboratory for their suitability for tofu.
First own varieties approved
In 2019, after ten years of breeding work, the first of our very own soybean varieties was officially approved: “Tofina” is perfectly suited to cultivation in Germany, and due to its early maturation, it can be grown on 70% of the cropland in our country. In 2021 came the second variety we developed in collaboration with the University of Hohenheim: “Tori” soybeans exhibit an exceptionally high protein content. Both soybean varieties produce first-class tofu. The greater the protein content, the better the bean is suited for tofu making. Other criteria are the amount of tofu that the soybeans can produce, how firm the tofu is, its mouthfeel, and whether the tofu has the desired neutral taste.
Breeding and developing varieties are integral parts of Taifun’s soybean cultivation work. Our great aim is to find a tofu-soybean variety for every region in Germany and to more firmly establish organic soybean cultivation in this country.