SPRINGFIELD – In October, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will begin contacting soybean and wheat growers to learn about their production practices during the 2012 growing season. NASS and USDA’s Economic Research Service (ERS) jointly conduct the Agricultural Resource Management Survey (ARMS), which gathers data on farmers’ chemical use and pest management and irrigation practices for these two crops.
“After a very favorable spring, followed by one of the worst droughts in U.S. history, it is extremely important for us to see how the growers are coping with these challenges,” said NASS Illinois Field Office director Brad Schwab. “The results of this survey will help agricultural leaders and decision-makers better understand how producers cope with risks and make decisions about chemical use, new technologies and other aspects of farming. Producers can use the survey results to make production decisions on their farm.”
Beginning in October and continuing through mid-December, NASS representatives will conduct face-to-face interviews with more than 6,000 growers nationwide, including 450 in Illinois.
“Interviewers will ask all growers to provide information on their fertilizer or nutrient use and their pest management practices,” Schwab said. “Early next year, we will follow up with some participants to obtain additional economic and cost of production data.”
As with all NASS surveys, information provided by respondents is confidential by law. NASS safeguards the privacy of all respondents and publishes data only in aggregate form, ensuring that no individual operation or grower can be identified.
For more information on NASS surveys and reports, visit www.nass.usda.gov or call the NASS Illinois Field Office at 800-622-9865.