Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced that USDA is conducting the USDA Fruit Chemical Use Survey. This survey, last conducted in 2007, provides data about agricultural chemical use on fruit crops in the United States.

"The Fruit Chemical Use Survey gives producers the opportunity to explain how they use agricultural chemicals responsibly to produce a safe, healthy, and high-quality food supply," said Vilsack. "The resulting data will help support the regulatory programs that protect the health and safety of agriculture producers and consumers alike."

USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will include information on the chemical and fertilizer use and pest management practices for more than 20 selected fruit crops. NASS will collect survey responses through December and publish the results in the Fruit Chemical Usage report in July 2010.

This report is an influential decision-making tool for everyone who serves the agriculture industry, including policymakers, agribusiness, trade associations and producers. Data from the Fruit Chemical Use Survey are a vital resource used to evaluate the Food Quality Protection Act, which has an impact on pesticide registrations, re-registrations and product alternatives.

Growers are strongly encouraged to participate and are guaranteed by law (Title 7, U.S. Code) that their individual information will be kept confidential. For more information visit http://www.nass.usda.gov or call (800) 727-9540.