St. Paul, Mn –The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will be conducting the biannual Agricultural Labor Survey. The survey will collect information about hired labor from more than 350 Minnesota farmers and ranchers.
“Labor is obviously critical to farming operations and data about the use of hired workers helps administer farm labor programs,” said State Statistician Dan Lofthus. “The data that farm operators provide through NASS’s Agricultural Labor Survey helps leaders, associations, and farmers themselves make decisions based on accurate information.”
USDA and the U.S. Department of Labor will use statistics gathered in the Agricultural Labor Survey to establish minimum wage rates for agricultural workers, administer farm labor recruitment and placement service programs, and assist legislators in determining labor policies.
The survey asks participants to answer a variety of questions about hired farm labor on their operations, including total number of hired farm workers, the average hours worked, and wage rates paid for the weeks of July 10-16 and October 9-15. For their convenience, survey participants have the option to respond online.
“By asking about two separate time periods in one survey, we are able to publish quarterly data and capture seasonal variation, while also reducing the number of surveys respondents receive and the time they spend responding,” said Lofthus.
NASS will publish survey results in the November 17 Farm Labor report. All previous Farm Labor publications are available online at http://bit.ly/FarmLabor. For more information on NASS surveys and reports, call the NASS Minnesota Field Office at (651) 728-3113.