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Survey available for Virginia farms and agribusinesses

Researchers in the Agricultural and Applied Economics Department at Virginia Tech are inviting all Virginia farms and agribusinesses to participate in a study to assess and quantify the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on their farm or business.

The purpose of this survey is to understand the effects of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on Virginia commercial farms and agribusinesses throughout the Commonwealth. The survey results will help to inform Extension programming to better serve stakeholders in response to ongoing challenges.

This survey should take no more than 20 minutes to complete, according to a press release about the study. The researchers will invite all participants to participate in this study again in the future in an effort to capture the evolving effects of COVID-19. Participating in the follow-up survey will help the researchers better understand the impact COVID-19 has on agricultural operations. No personal information (name, address, e-mail, telephone number, IP address, etc.) will be collected. All data from this survey will remain confidential and anonymous.

The survey is available at https://bit.ly/3qLd10V.

The survey is open to operators and managers of farms and agribusinesses with a primary location in Virginia. Respondents must be 18 years of age or older. There are no benefits or rewards for participating in this study. Results from this study may be used to communicate the effects of COVID-19 on Virginia farms and agribusinesses to state and federal agencies in an effort to secure relief. Results from this study may also be published in the future. Participation in this research survey is voluntary.

The first 500 valid survey participants will be given the opportunity to enter a drawing for a $10 electronic gift card for Amazon. Participants must provide a valid email address at the end of the survey to enter the drawing. Again, multiple entries from the same address will be disqualified. One hundred gift cards are available, so the chances of winning are at least 20% (100 in 500). Participants may be withdrawn from the study without their consent if the research team has concerns about the validity of their answers. If an individual is withdrawn, no compensation will be offered.

Results from this study will be summarized in publications and presentations. These will be made available to all stakeholders and the broader public upon completion of this study. All data will be aggregated so that it will be impossible for anyone to identify information supplied by any individual respondent (farm or agribusiness).

For more information about the project, please see a summary of the first-round results, available at https://bit.ly/3jPeKAm.

This survey will close at 11:59 p.m. on April 12, 2021. After beginning the survey, responses will be automatically saved so that the participant may return to complete it later using the same device, and the link with which the survey was originally accessed.

If you would like a copy of the summary results, or have any questions about this study, please contact John Bovay (bovay@vt.edu) or Catherine Larochelle (claroche@vt.edu).

If you have questions about your rights as a research participant, or concerns or complaints about the research, you may contact the Virginia Tech HRPP at 540-231-3732 or irb@vt.edu and reference 20-617.