Based upon provisions of the Act and Order that require a “plan or project” and “budgets,” checkoff dollars should generally not be used to fund an endowment. USB does not recommend this type of activity.
However, a QSSB that plans to fund an academic chair at a university should have the following criteria built into the agreement between the QSSB and the university:
- There must be a contract that specifically identifies the purpose of the academic chair to be awarded and its benefit to soybean producers.
- The contract must be renewable on an annual basis, and there must be a required action by the QSSB to authorize the funding of the chair annually.
- The agreement between the QSSB and the university should provide the QSSB with advice and consent with regard to who is awarded the chair.
- The agreement between the QSSB and university should set out clear objectives and criteria for the activities that will be funded through the chair.
- Within the objectives set out in the agreement, there should be annual deliverables that should be presented clearly in the contract and delivered upon through the academic year.
Academic chairs funded with checkoff dollars will be subject to USB and USDA audits and reviews.