In August of each year, USDA publishes the official cranberry production forecast for the five major cranberry-producing States. In Massachusetts, the survey is conducted by the New England Field Office of USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). The other four States in USDA's cranberry estimation program are New Jersey, Oregon, Washington, and Wisconsin.
"The Cranberry Growers Survey is the only chance to officially forecast production of the 2012 crop," explained Gary Keough, Director of the NASS New England Field Office. Approximately 350 Massachusetts growers will be surveyed in this effort. The questionnaire will be mailed in mid-July with phone follow-up at the end of July and early August. As with all NASS surveys, individual information provided by respondents is held confidential by law. "NASS safeguards the confidentiality of all responses and publishes only aggregate totals, ensuring that no individual operation or producer can be identified," stated Keough.
Representatives from the NASS New England Field Office will contact Massachusetts cranberry growers and ask them to provide information on their acreage and expected production. Forecasted production estimates for the 2012 crop will be published on August 14, 2012 at 1:00 p.m. in the Cranberries release. You can get a copy of the report by going to the NASS website at www.nass.usda.gov
or by calling the NASS New England Field Office at 1-800-642-9571.