U.S. ag census coming in the mail
December 19, 2012, Washington, DC – It’s not every day that a walk to your mailbox leads to an opportunity to help shape farm programs, boost rural services and grow your farm future.
For producers across the U.S., that opportunity will soon become a reality. The 2012 Census of Agriculture is currently being mailed to millions of farmers and ranchers across the United States.
Conducted every five years by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), the census provides detailed data covering nearly every facet of U.S. agriculture. It looks at land use and ownership, production practices, expenditures and other factors that affect the way farmers do business and succeed in the 21st Century.
In addition to affecting policy decisions, census information also influences community growth and development. Many companies review census data when determining where to establish or expand their businesses, as well as where they can go for supplies of locally produced food and agricultural products, which further emphasizes the importance of supplying accurate information. Information from the census also is valuable to explain the many ways farming is important to urban or non-farming residents and decision-makers.
All farmers and ranchers should receive a census form in the mail by early January. Completed forms are due by February 4, 2013. Farmers 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.
For more information about the census, visit www.agcensus.usda.gov or call 1-888-4AG-STAT (1-888-424-7828).