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Soybean facts for kids

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Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Genus: 'Glycine'
Species: ''G. max''
Binomial name
Glycine max
(L.) Merr.

The soybean (or soya bean) is a plant with fruit called beans from Eastern Asia. The height of a grown soybean plant is can be less than 20 cm or up to 2 meters.

Soybean flowers
Small, purple soybean flowers

The fruit is a hairy pod that grows in clusters of three to five, each pod is 3–8 cm (1.2–3.1 in) long and usually contains two to four (rarely more) seeds 5–11 mm in diameter. Soybean seeds come in a wide variety of sizes and hull colors such as black, brown, yellow, and green. Variegated and bicolored seed coats are also common.


Soybeans can be eaten or used to make oil, sauce, milk, flour, tofu and other foods. These soy foods have much protein, and many vegetarians like that. Also fuel can be made from soybeans.


In 1997, 81% of all soybeans were of genetically modified stock. This means that genes were changed directly.

In China, going back to the ancient Chou dynasty soy beans were considered to be one of the five sacred foods.

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Soybean Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.