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State

Illinois wheat farmers to participate in USDA survey

U.S. Department of Agriculture will target wheat producers for survey

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service will gather information about farm economics and production practices from wheat producers across Illinois, as part of the 2019 Agricultural Resource Management Survey.

“ARMS is a vital survey that tracks how Illinois farms use technology to manage production of their major field crops,” NASS Illinois state statistician Mark Schleusener said. “The survey helps policymaker and farm groups understand the factors driving costs of production and returns from crop production.”

NASS enumerators will conduct the survey in-person starting as early as September, and recommend farmers have their fertilizer and pesticide spray records available to speed up the survey process.

This year, NASS is reaching out to more than 1,500 barley producers, 2,000 cotton producers, 1,000 sorghum, and 3,000 wheat producers across the country – including 125 wheat growers in Illinois.

The ARMS survey is conducted in three phases from May 2019 through April 2020. The first phase screened participants to make sure they had the commodity of interest and would accurately represent the entire U.S. farm sector.

In this current phase, NASS will collect information on production practices and chemical use for the specific commodities mentioned above.

In the final phase, NASS will survey producers on cost of production, farm income, and production expenditures.

Data provided by farmers is confidential and protected by law. NASS further safeguards the privacy of all respondents by publishing only aggregate data, ensuring that no individual operation or producer can be identified.

ARMS is a joint effort of NASS and USDA’s Economic Research Service. For information about the 2019 Agricultural Resource Management Survey, visit www.nass.usda.gov/go/arms.

Survey results and all NASS reports are available online at www.nass.usda.gov/Publications. For information, call the NASS Heartland Regional Field Office at 800-551-1014.

Meanwhile, Monday was the start of National Farm Safety and Health Week.

As another harvest season begins, the Illinois Department of Agriculture reminds all farm workers to stay safe, especially during the upcoming and busy harvest season. Each year since 1944, the third week of September has been recognized as National Farm Safety and Health Week.

Governor JB Pritzker has proclaimed the week of Sept. 15 to 21 as National Farm Safety and Health Week in Illinois, with the theme “Shift Farm Safety into High Gear.”

The latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the agriculture sector is still the most dangerous in America. Each year the farming profession sees 581 fatalities, which is about 23 deaths per 100,000 workers.

“As a farmer, I know firsthand the hazards of the farming industry, whether in the field, on the road or with our health,” said John Sullivan, Director, Illinois Department of Agriculture. “Dedicating a week each year to highlight farm safety, especially around the busy time of harvest will hopefully bring awareness and prevent accidents.”

Each day during National Farm Safety and Health Week, the Illinois Department of Agriculture will highlight emerging issues and important topics on Facebook and Twitter, including farmer health and opioid/suicide prevention, safety and health for youth in agriculture and safety and health for women in agriculture.

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