It’s not too late to be counted in the U.S. Census of Agriculture!
Farmers and ranchers across the country are heeding the call to have their voices heard and their farms represented in the 2012 Census of Agriculture. With 1.4 million Census forms returned, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) thanks everyone for speaking up by sending in their Census form.
For those who missed the deadline, USDA reminds producers that their farm is important and needs to be counted. As a result, Census forms are still being accepted.
Farmers and ranchers can return their forms by mail or online by visiting a secure website, www.agcensus.usda.gov. Federal law requires all agricultural producers to participate in the Census and requires NASS to keep all individual information confidential. Anyone with over $1,000 in ag sales in 2012 is considered a farmer for the Census of Agriculture.
*Those that didn’t receive a questionnaire in the mail should sign up at the same site by March 31 and USDA will send them a questionnaire.
Every five years, the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) conducts the Census of Agriculture.
Data collected in the Census of Agriculture ranges from land use and production practices to farm expenditures and farm ownership demographics. This critical information is used to shape policy, USDA programs, research, and funding for farmers and ranchers throughout the country. Says Renee Picanso of NASS, “If you want to be heard and you want agriculture represented, now is your chance.”
All farmers should have received Census forms in the mail this December. The deadline to return forms (either by mail or online) is Monday, February 4th.
For Census purposes, a farm is any place from which $1,000 or more of agricultural products were produced and sold during the Census year (2012). Any farmers, new or established, who did not receive a questionnaire in the mail should provide their contact information at www.agcounts.usda.gov/cgi-bin/counts/ and NASS will send them a questionnaire. You will have until March 31st to sign up.
Visit www.agcensus.usda.gov to submit Census forms online and to find tips or answers to frequently asked questions.