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USDA terminates several agriculture surveys

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistical Service said that in light of funding reductions in fiscal year 2011 and the likelihood of additional reductions in fiscal year 2012, the agency is discontinuing its Annual Reports on Farm Numbers, Land in Farms and Livestock Operations; Nursery Report; Annual Floriculture Report; Annual Bee and Honey Report; Catfish and Trout Report; Annual Hops Production Report; and the Annual Mink Report. Other surveys cut back include the July Cattle Report and the January Sheep and Goat Report.

The commodity coverage of the NASS Chemical Use Reports will be reduced in frequency, the Potato Stocks Report will be reduced from monthly to quarterly, fruit and vegetable in-season forecast and estimates are being reduced from monthly and quarterly to annual publications, and the Rice Stocks reports for June and September will be eliminated. NASS also said it was cancelling its Distiller Co-Products for Feed Survey.

NASS indicated that they conducted reviews of all programs looking at mission and user-based criteria, aimed at finding cost savings and efficiencies so that key timely, accurate and useful data remains available to agriculture.

The American Soybean Association and other groups have been working to address the decision by the U.S. Census Bureau to terminate the Current Industrial Reports, including two oilseed reports. Recent efforts have been focused on providing USDA with the authority and funding to assume the reports previously conducted by Census. The budget cuts at USDA that are resulting in the elimination of existing NASS reports create a significant challenge in the efforts to have USDA assume the oilseed and other industrial reports.



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