Farmers needed to help guide direction of future MSU Extension field crop programming

The MSU Extension field crops team is asking farmers for guidance by filling out a brief online needs assessment.

photo of corn plants in a field with a grey sky

Every three years, the Michigan State University Extension field crops team asks farmers and agribusiness professionals to help them chart the course for their programming efforts by participating in a needs assessment survey. The survey has historically been done regionally and held in person. However, in 2020, the field crops team is asking for farmers and agribusiness professionals to help them with an online survey. The survey can be completed in usually less than 10 minutes. Thoughtful and insightful information may come from just one person’s idea and input.

In years past, ideas generated from the needs assessment have been developed into programs. One example occurred during the last needs assessment meeting. Tech-savvy farmers shared an idea for something different to be done online. They needed something that was available on a cell phone and recorded for later listening. That idea turned into the MSU Extension Field Crops Virtual Breakfast Series which is held every Thursday morning during the growing season. In 2020, the virtual breakfasts had 2,134 participants. Other hot topic areas such as soil health and cover crops, farm profitability or an emphasis on production risks may become the focal point of new programming based on responses from participants.

The ideas, interests and concerns of those involved with the field crops industry will be collected, summarized, and sorted to give direction to the entire MSU Field Crops Team for the next few years.

To encourage participation this year, participants have the option to be included in a drawing for a $100 gas gift card. Three cards will be awarded to randomly selected people that complete the online questionnaire and ‘opt-in’ for the drawing.

To complete the online MSU Extension statewide field crops needs assessment survey, please visit For more information, contact Jim Isleib at or call at 906-387-2530.

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