Iowa law enforcement with soy-based tires

Ankeny Police Sergeant Mark Moeller, Detective Kris Lindell, Electronic Storage Detection K9 Sandy and Sergeant Corey Schneden with Ankeny Police Department’s new set of wheels. (Photo: Joclyn Bushman/Iowa Soybean Association)

From soybean pod to police pursuit

May 5, 2023 | Bethany Baratta

Their job description means they work 24/7, 365 to keep communities safe. They protect life and property through the enforcement of laws and regulations. Their best effort is required every shift, every day.

During National Law Enforcement Appreciation Month in May, the Iowa Soybean Association (ISA) is showing its gratitude by equipping three Ankeny Police Department vehicles with sets of Goodyear Eagle Enforcer All Weather tires that include soybean oil in the tire tread.

Amin Bakri installing tires in Ankeny

“We appreciate the hard work and dedication of local law enforcement and are proud to know the department can rely on soy while keeping our communities safe,” says Randy Miller, ISA president from Lacona.

These specific Goodyear Eagle Enforcer All Weather tires contain soybean oil in the tire tread compound. This tread compound helps to deliver superior traction in dry, wet and snowy conditions while enhancing tread life and reducing petroleum usage when compared to other tires. The inclusion of soybean oil in the tread compound results in an approximately 45% reduction in petroleum-based oil compared to its predecessor.

The tires donated by ISA will be placed on an unmarked Ankeny K9 unit and two fully-marked patrol vehicles, used to circuit city streets.

“The donation of Goodyear Eagle Enforcer All Weather tires with soybean oil by the Iowa Soybean Association means that the department will be able to continue toward its goal of using equipment that is use more sustainable and eco-friendly,” says Corey Schneden, sergeant for the Ankeny Police Department. “This donation will help the police department reduce its carbon footprint and contribute to a cleaner environment.”

Ankeny Police Department K9 Sandy

Backed by farmers

With financial support from the United Soybean Board (USB) through checkoff investments, Goodyear championed the use of soybean oil in its tire products in 2017, calling it a “naturally derived, cost-effective, carbon-neutral and renewable tire technology.”

“Knowing that soy, a product grown in Iowa, is used in producing these tires is a source of pride for the local community,” Schneden says. “This donation from the ISA represents a great example of how innovative technologies can support local farmers and businesses, while also helping to reduce our use of petroleum-based products.”

Goodyear’s Assurance WeatherReady, Assurance ComfortDrive, Eagle Exhilarate, Wranger HT and Eagle Enforcer All Weather tires, as well as its Metro Miler G152 and G652, the Endurance WHA waste haul tire, and some Goodyear racing tires, are made with a soybean oil compound.

Improved performance

The Goodyear team of scientists and engineers created the soybean oil-based tread compound. Using soybean oil kept the rubber compound flexible in changing temperatures, a key performance achievement in maintaining and enhancing grip between the vehicle and the road surface.

Tires that include reduced petroleum and increase soybean oil

Additionally, Goodyear discovered that soybean oil mixes more easily with rubber compounds and reduces energy consumption, which improves tire manufacturing efficiency.

“Farmer investment and support in the research and development of new products containing soybeans continue to generate significant wins for consumers, the environment and our industry,” says Miller. “The use of soybean oil in tires is a perfect example of our checkoff dollars driving sustainable innovation and partnership.”