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Soybean producers have opportunity to request referendum

Posted on May 16, 2024 at 6:15 AM

The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) recently announced that soybean producers may request a referendum to determine whether producers want the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to conduct a referendum on the Soybean Promotion and Research Order, as authorized under the Soybean Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Act. Participation in the request for a referendum is voluntary. Producers should participate only if they wish to request a referendum on the program.

The soybean research and promotion program operates as the United Soybean Board.  The program's goal is to maintain and expand domestic and foreign markets and uses for soybeans and soybean products. It is funded by a mandatory assessment of 0.5 of 1 percent of the net market price of soybeans.  All producers marketing soybeans, except organic producers, must pay the assessment.

If at least 10 percent, not to exceed one-fifth of producers from any one state, of the 515,008 eligible producers determined by the USDA participate in the request for the referendum, a referendum will be held within one year from that determination. If results of the request for a referendum indicate that a referendum is not supported, a referendum will not be conducted. The results of the request for a referendum will be published in a notice in the Federal Register.

Soybean producers may request a referendum until May 31.

To be eligible to participate in the request for referendum, producers must certify that they or the producer entity they are authorized to represent paid an assessment any time between Jan. 1, 2022, and Dec. 31, 2023.

Form LS-51-1, Soybean Promotion and Research Order Request for Referendum, can be obtained until May 31 by mail, fax, or in person from local Farm Service Agency (FSA) Service Centers, or can be downloaded from

Deadlines for completed forms and supporting documentation to be returned to the appropriate FSA Service Center:

• By fax or in-person, no later than close of business on May 31, 2024.

• By mail postmarked, by midnight on May 31 and must be received in the FSA Service Center by close of business on June 7.

Notice of the request for referendum was published in the Feb. 2 Federal Register. For more information, contact Jeana Harbison, Research and Promotion Division; Livestock and Poultry Program, AMS, USDA; STOP 0249 – Room 2092-S; 1400 Independence Avenue, SW; Washington, D.C. 20250-0249; tel. (202) 720-5705; or via the following link:

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