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2015-16 Student Soybean Product Innovation Competition

22nd Anniversary of the ISA Sponsored Competition

Here is a listing of all teams and a brief description of their products


Team Members:

  • Ryan DeBusk, Animal Bioscience Senior
  • Taylor Gamble, Agricultural Business Management Senior

Team Advisors:

  • Brad Joern, Agronomy
  • Phil Reid, Animal Science

The team at Soy Spacing technologies has produced a product line of shipping and construction soybean spacers that mimic the tasks of natural cork and rubber spacers.  Our final prototype is 2/3 soybean and can be used in the same applications that natural cork and rubber can. 

We tried over 60 combinations of materials and ways to make the spacers, in our final prototype we found that a silicone and soybean mix made the most constant product that still functioned in the way we needed while still keeping a high soy concentration.

Our product gives producer a natural alternative to cork spacers that can be made of domestic product. Current natural corks are derived from cork oaks that are grown in more topical regions of the world and then the cores are shipped to the US.  Our products are made of natural material, and support the domestic soybean industry.  Another key point to our spacers is the price point that allows this product to be made cheaper than the natural cork spacers.


Team Members:

  • Steve Ferris, Pharmacy Senior

  • Sam Lewis, Pharmacy Senior

  • Ryan Pendergast, Mechanical Engineering Junior

  • Alison Switzer, Pharmacy Senior

Team Advisors:

  • Rodolfo Pinal, Industrial & Physical Pharmacy

  • Steven Scott, Pharmacy Practice

Our creation is a soy-based exfoliant product presented in both bar and liquid soaps.  Naturally degradable, our novel exfoliating soy beads replace plastic microbeads that are being federally banned in the United States. The current plastic microbeads in commercial consumer products are made of a variety of plastics, the most common being polyethylene, polymethyl methacrylate, nylon, and polypropylene.  Simply put, our solution to replacing these governmentally outlawed plastic microbeads is nothing more than the idea of using whole soybeans.  By this, the customers who will be losing the products they once loved will have an all-natural alternative that will also provide positive effects for the environment.

The simplicity of ingredients in our product is represented through the use of soybean oil, milled soybeans, coconut oil, olive oil, lye, and floral fragrance oils.  The various oils were chosen based on their ability to stabilize the product and provide moisturizing effects to the hands of the consumer.  The fragrance oil, when mixed with the natural sweet smell of the coconut oil, makes for an appealing stimulation of the senses. 




Team Members:

  • Alexis Laureano, Biological Engineering Junior
  • Megan Morris, Liberal Arts Junior
  • Cody Spoolstra, Biological Engineering Junior
  • Kimberly Wylin, Biological Engineering Junior

Team Advisors:

  • Teresa Cavajal, Agricultural & Biological Engineering
  • Amanda Thompson, Purdue Foundry

The product our team developed is artificial nails made out of soy.  Artificial nails are used by consumers to provide them with aesthetically pleasing nails for a variety of occasions (Nails Magazine, 2015).  This product was originally made from acrylic and other harsh chemicals, which has been causing concern among consumers.  Our product contains mostly soy based components making it a more natural and user safe product.  The safety of such a product is extremely important since nails are in direct contact with the user’s skin and potentially open wounds.  The nails are made by combining soy protein, oil, and glycerin with protein binding agents and a common food and pharmaceutical component, ethylene glycol.  A notable 27% of consumers who used artificial nails are concerned about the chemicals inside of them, and even more people do not use the nails entirely for this reason (Nails Magazine, 2015).  The developed product, Perfect10 Nails, is meant to provide concerned consumers with a choice that they feel confident making for their environment, health, and beauty.

Perfect10 Nails can be used for many different occasions.  Events including weddings, proms, and quinceaneras are typical events where artificial nails are worn. These nails can also be worn on a normal day-to-day basis. Eventually, the product idea could be furthered by being developed into other nail care products, such as the gels that need to be applied by a nail technician in a salon.  There is huge potential for soy to be used in cosmetology products as more and more consumers are becoming concerned about the chemical components of the items they use every day.


Team Members:

  • Emily Coleman, Biological Engineering Sophomore
  • Caitlin Link, Animal Science Sophomore
  • Madison McGuffey, Agricultural Economics Sophomore
  • Emmy Rawson, Biological Engineering Sophomore

Team Advisors:

  • Maria Marshall, Agricultural Economics
  • David Umulis, Agricultural & Biological Engineering

Soy Queens has created a cushioning material that is intended to be used as a padding in automobile seat.  This is a bio based material for the environmentally conscious consumer.  It is an environmentally friendly alternative to other products on the market.

This product was created as an alternative to the commercially available padding products.  Soy Queen’s goal is to eliminate many of the hazardous chemicals that are normally found in products such as mattresses, pillows, and helmet inserts.  This product serves to comfort the consumer because it is a bio-based product, and therefore the consumer knows the base ingredients.  Whole soybeans including the hulls and defatted soy flour are the main components of the product.




Team Members:

  • Andrew Cameron, Chemical Engineering Sophomore
  • Harshit Kapoor, Civil Engineering Sophomore
  • Xuan Luo, Agricultural & Biological Engineering Sophomore

Team Advisors:

  • Kelly Blanchard, Management
  • Nate Mosier, Agricultural & Biological Engineering

The product we created is well known to consumers as laundry detergent pods.  Although, structurally the same, we are doing things differently by introducing a bio-friendly side to them by the use of Soy Protein Isolate (SPI) to form the outside coating.  Currently, the films for pods are made from polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) which is more damaging to our environment than SPI.  The use of SPI films also allow for a wider range of properties such as solubility, and strength.  The soy also gives the film a yellowish, soy milk color which may be beneficial to help reduce the number of youth mistaking the pods for candy.  Although, we are only focusing on a laundry detergent pod, the same principle can be used for single dose dishwashing detergents.


Team Members:

  • Sara Hansen, Chemical Engineering Sophomore
  • Colleen Kettner, Mechanical Engineering Sophomore
  • Joshua Ostman, Aerospace Engineering Senior
  • Grace Winn, English Junior

Team Advisors:

  • Michael Harris, Chemical Engineering
  • Paul Preckel, Agricultural Economics

Window clings are found in many households.  They are used as decorations, to show support for a certain organizations or teams, or even educational purposes.  The product, called Soy Pleascent, can fulfill the needs of those looking for a window cling with one added bonus:  it has a nice fragrance.

The adhesive product is produced through mixing soybean oil, isocyanate, essential oils for smell, and dye for color.  These adhesives, or clings, can be produced rather inexpensively and have a wide market; competing products were also analyzed.  They can be produced in a wide array of colors and scents, not to mention that they can be easily cut into any shape a consumer might desire.


Team Members:

  • Jordan Jackson, Biological Engineering Sophomore
  • Gytis Kriauciunas, Biological Engineering Sophomore
  • Rachel Menhart, Biochemistry Sophomore
  • Julia Russo, Biological Engineering Sophomore

Team Advisors:

  • Vince Duffy, Industrial Engineering
  • Christopher Uyeda, Chemistry

So-ja is a unique and novel, natural deodorant - the first soybean based antiperspirant.

This product addresses the growing demand of natural based skin care products while capitalizing on an established market (estimated USD $285Bn) and manufacturing infrastructure. Further, it provides a new product line for soy wax and soy oil, which compose ~58% of the product. This novel composition & formulation can be tailored to meet the demands of multiple customer segments (gender-based, performance-based) and these unique formulations can be filed for patent-protection.


Team Members:

  • Evan Anderson, Agricultural Engineering Senior
  • Dylan Lowden, Environmental & Health Sciences Senior
  • Sara Richert, Public Relations Senior

Team Advisors:

  • Vince Bralts, Agricultural & Biological Engineering
  • Matthew Ginzel, Entomology

Sparked by Soy is a fire starter paste made mainly from various parts of the soybean plant.  Although some additives were necessary in order to ensure that the product be successful enough to compete on the market, the final product is composed of 72.4% soy. 

The body of the fire starter is made from 100% soy, consisting of a mixture of soybean oil and stearic acid.  Stearic acid is a saturated fatty acid that can be derived from plant and animal sources, but in this case is derived from soybeans to ensure the high percentage of soy in the product.  The combination of soybean oil and stearic acid makes for a thick, paste-like substance that can easily carry the kindling and fire-starter component, and can be applied on nearly any surface, as needed.  


Team Members:

  • Aubree Anton, Biology Senior
  • Elizabeth Ziga, Agricultural & Biological Engineering

Team Advisors:

  • Beth Carroll, Entrepreneurship
  • Abigail Engelberth, Agricultural & Biological Engineering

Soja Soya “Dry Shampoo” is a soy-based dry shampoo product that is applied and massaged into the user’s scalp as a means of absorbing excess oil found on the scalp and roots of hair. The purpose of the dry shampoo is to fit into the user’s lifestyle as a convenient and quick means of hair refreshment as well as a way to reduce the frequency of traditional shampoo cleaning. It is made out of all natural ingredients and is colored to match users with blond, brunette, and auburn hair.





Team Members:

  • Andrea Chambers, Biomedical Engineering PhD
  • Mark Fanelli, Chemical Engineering Junior
  • Orlando Hoilett, Biomedical Engineering PhD
  • James Mills, Biomedical Engineering Junior

Team Advisors:

  • Brady Kalb, Entrepreneurship
  • Shaili Sharma, Biomedical Engineering

The So-Ya Baby Scrubber, is an 80% soy dishwashing scrubber for household dishes, utensils, pots, and pans. There are two sides to the dish scrubber, a soft side to wash and rinse off the dishes, and a coarse side for removing caked on food.  The two-sided design provides versatility to our product.  Poly-l-lysine is also added to the sponge as an antimicrobial agent (Nishikawa and Ogawa, 2002) to 

prevent the buildup of mold and bacteria, a common problem with scrubbers currently on the market (Organic Housekeeping).  Presently, there are not many soy sponge products being used for kitchen cleaning or scrubbing purposes on the market.