The Arkansas Corn and Grain Sorghum Board consist of 7 corn and/or grain sorghum producers, nominated by industry organizations (2 Riceland, 2 Ag Council and 3 Arkansas Farm Bureau Federation) and appointed by the Governor. Terms last two years, and while members contribute many hours of their time administering the program, they serve without pay.
History of the Program
The Arkansas Corn and Grain Sorghum Checkoff Program was established by Act 271 of the 1997 Arkansas General Assembly. The checkoff was approved by a referendum of producers in February and March of 1998 and collections began July 1, 1998.
The checkoff of 1-cent per bushel of all corn and grain sorghum grown in Arkansas for market is collected at the first point of sale. The funds are used mostly to maintain a program of research through the University of Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service. A small portion is used for other programs designed to enhance the Arkansas corn and grain sorghum industries.
In addition to the state checkoff for sorghum, the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) began collecting the national sorghum checkoff on July 1, 2008, which is based on 0.6% of the value of the crop. The national checkoff is sent to the national board where between 15 and 25 percent is passed back to the state. The remainder is used to fund sorghum research and promotion at the national level. The national checkoff does not preclude the collection of a state checkoff. Until state legislative action is taken, Arkansas will continue to collect its state checkoff. Elevators looking for information about remitting the national checkoff please contact Craig Shackelford at 202-720-1123 or firstname.lastname@example.org