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February 16, 2007

USDA Evaluates 2007 Planting Intentions

(Columbia, MO) - How many acres of Missouri’s major crops do farmers intend to plant this growing season? How much will rising grain prices affect producer’s planting decisions? Will intended acreage be above or below last year? These are a few of the critical questions the Missouri Field Office of the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will be asking more than 3,000 producers statewide as part of the March Agricultural Survey.

"This survey is one of the most important surveys conducted each year by NASS," explained Gene Danekas, director of the NASS Missouri Field Office. "It will provide the much anticipated first official estimates of U.S. farmers’ planting intentions for 2007, giving a glimpse at the upcoming growing season in time for producers to have a final opportunity to re-evaluate their operation."

"Data from the March Agricultural Survey benefit farmers and ranchers by providing timely and accurate information to help them make critical decisions for their operation. When finalizing cropping and marketing plans, this survey will be one of the most important sources of information for producers," added Danekas.

Beginning the end of February, selected Missouri producers will be contacted by mail or telephone and asked to provide information on the crop acreage they intend to plant for the 2007 crop year, including corn, soybean, sorghum, rice, and cotton acreage. NASS will also collect data on quantities of grains and oilseeds stored on-farms. The information will be compiled and analyzed then published in a series of USDA reports, including the Prospective Plantings report and quarterly Grain Stocks report, both to be released on March 30.

As with all NASS surveys, information provided by respondents is confidential by law. "NASS safeguards the confidentiality of all responses and publishes only state- and national-level data, ensuring that no individual operation or producer can be identified," stated Danekas. All reports are available on this web site. For more information on NASS surveys and reports, call the NASS Missouri Field Office at (800)551-1014.