(Posted Thu. Oct 26th, 2017)
The National Corn Growers Association urges growers to respond to surveys distributed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Statistics Service. Responses to recent surveys from USDA have reached historical lows, and this can impact farmers’ bottom lines.
“There seem to be county-to-county differences that are unaccounted for and, when you look at it, some counties did not have enough information from responses to the National Agricultural Statistics Service for them to publish data,” explained NCGA Risk Management Action Team Chair Steve Ebke, who farms in Nebraska. “Farm Service Agency uses that data to calculate ARC payments. So, if NASS does not have the data, they will have to look elsewhere for it.
“This has resulted in a great deal of concern in the countryside. We urge everyone to complete their NASS surveys so that each county has a sufficient amount of data for FSA to calculate the payments based upon what actually happened in that county.”
Farmers can either complete the survey manually with the booklet that they receive and mail that back in, or they can complete it online. Most of the information in the survey is information farmers have readily available.
“One thing that we want to emphasize is that your data is confidential,” said Ebke. “Your individual data is confidential and never individually presented somewhere. Your data is aggregated and only presented in that format. The confidentiality of your individual data submitted on the NASS survey is protected by federal law.”
Failing to complete the survey puts farmer’s personal operations at risk of receiving ARC payments that do not reflect actual production in their county.
“I just want to urge everyone to go ahead and complete this as it is very important to your bottom line,” Ebke concluded. “We have additional information on our website and even a direct link to USDA’s site, where you can complete your survey.”
To find out more, go to www.ncga.com/nass.