Iowa soybean producers could soon see a new market for their crops. U-S-D-A researchers have developed and patented an all-natural, environmentally-safe sun screen using soy oil. They’re calling it “SoyScreen”. Research scientist Dave Compton came up with the formula to bond the soy oil with a chemical from oat bran. He says the new sunscreen could be an additional use for the 18-billion pounds of soy oil produced annually.Iowa is already the nation’s top soybean producer. Compton, who works in the U-S-D-A lab in Peoria, Illinois, says the soy-based sun screen could lead to a variety of other products, any of which could be a boon for Iowa soybean growers.Other potential uses include: hand lotion, body lotion, lip balm, lipsticks and hair products. Compton says SoyScreen is an all-natural product so it’ll appeal to all sorts of people, including those with backyard pools who don’t want an oil slick on the surface after they go swimming. While it’s December and no one in the Midwest is really thinking much about avoiding sunburn, Compton says the SoyScreen product won’t be at the nearest grocery store for a while yet. U-S-D-A got the patent on SoyScreen in February and negotiations are underway with a company to license it. Test-marketing should be underway in 2003 and the product should be on store shelves in 2004.