There’s apparently some confusion over a change in the law covering the Iowa Corn Checkoff that began on July 1st. Iowa Corn Growers Association CEO, Craig Floss, says they’ve gotten a few calls on the issue. “We’ve been hearing reports of people misunderstanding exactly what the law was all about,” Floss says. “We’ve not had a significant number of calls, but enough that we want to get the word out that the checkoff rate is not changing at this time.”
The money from the checkoff is used to promote corn, and the checkoff had a limit of one penny for each bushel of corn sold. Floss says the law raised the cap to allow the checkoff limit to be two cents a bushel beginning on July 1st. “And in 2019 an additional penny authority for a total of three cents over time,” Floss says.
Some growers apparently think the law automatically increases the rate, but Floss says that’s wrong. “It will not change unless there is a farmer referendum vote held. Which means a majority of the corn farmers in that referendum would have to vote in the affirmative before there would be any change,”Floss says.
Floss says they sought the change to give them the option to bring in more funding if it is needed in the future, but he says there is no referendum scheduled to raise the cap at this time. The corn checkoff was created by the legislature in 1976 and first voted on by farmers in 1977.