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Surveying U.S. farmers

Surveying U.S. farmers

Producers will receive USDA surveys later this month

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

Some American farmers will be receiving U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) surveys during the month of April.

The National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will be contacting growers in Michigan, Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin who previously reported unharvested corn and soybean acreages.

“Back in December when we did our major end of season survey work, we asked farmers to report any acres that they still have standing for harvest and what their expectations were for those remaining acres” Lance Honig, crops branch chief with NASS, told “So now we want producers in those four states to update us on what actually happened to those acres that were left standing.”

NASS will be contacting producers in North Dakota at a later date because farmers still have significant acres to harvest, Honig said.

Corn harvest in the state sits around 81 per cent completion, the USDA reported on April 6. Farmers in that state planted 3.7 million acres of corn that year, meaning around 2.99 million acres of the state’s 2019 corn crop has been harvested.

Figures in future reports could change depending on how producers respond to the April resurveys.

“Based on the data we collect from (Michigan, Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin) this month, if the results indicate we need to make adjustments to final numbers, they would be reflected in the May Crop Production report,” Honig said.

The unharvested acreage survey isn’t the only one NASS will be sending out this month.

During the second half of the month, producers will receive the USDA’s biannual Agricultural Labor Survey.

Farmers can expect to be asked how many hired workers they have, and total base and gross wages paid for the weeks of January 12-18 and April 12-18.

The USDA and U.S. Department of Labor use the survey data to help determine minimum wages for hired farmworkers and help lawmakers develop labor policies.

Dairy farmers can expect to receive a sector-specific survey this month.

The USDA will be sending out the second of its three yearly Milk Production surveys. The first one was sent in January and the final one will come in July.

The survey includes questions like how many cows are in the herd, number of cows milked and total milk production for the first day in the month.

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