New checkoff assessment rates for corn and corn silage became effective June 1 this year in Texas.
More than two-thirds of corn producers who participated in a statewide referendum the past January voted to increase the assessment on corn to one cent per bushel and $.074 per ton of silage. This is the first increase in the assessment rates since the corn checkoff program was established in Texas in 1980. The silage assessment began in 2006.
Assessments are collected from producers by the first handler of corn, usually a grain warehouse or grain elevator, and are remitted monthly to the Texas Corn Producers Board.
"This assessment will enable the board to continue fulfilling its mission of serving the industry with research, educational and promotional programs that are essential to corn producer profitability," says TCPB Chairman Scott Averhoff.
The corn checkoff program that began in Texas in 1980 came together 32 years ago when producers in seven counties in the Texas High Plains voted to start the assessment and create TCPB to manage the program. The program was expanded to the rest of the state in a statewide producer referendum in 1990. The original assessment rate of a half-cent per bushel of corn remained the same until this year. A producer referendum in 2006 added corn silage to the program with an assessment at the time of $.037 per ton.
Inflation amounted to 164% from 1980 to 2010 and eroded the value of the original corn checkoff assessment, while the price received by corn producers has more than doubled over the same period.
Major accomplishments in research, such as major breakthroughs for treatment of aflatoxin, along with disease and pest management, and also drought-tolerant hybrids have resulted from the checkoff.
Educational programs, accurate data and information for policy makers and news media, and leadership on water issues also have resulted.
The TCPB has been able to work with other state and national commodity organization to promote new uses for corn, expand exports, and add value to corn.