August 24, 2007
August 24, 2007 - America's farmers and ranchers will soon have the opportunity to participate in shaping the future of agriculture. The National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will begin distribution of the 2007 Census of Agriculture later this year.
"The Census of Agriculture provides information that is not available anywhere else - information that benefits agricultural producers and their communities in myriad ways," said NASS administrator Ron Bosecker. "For instance, policy-makers use census data for decisions concerning agricultural and rural programs. Community planners use census information to target delivery of local services. Companies rely on census data when determining where to locate their operations. And farmers themselves look at census data when deciding to make changes in their production strategies."
Conducted every five years by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the census is a complete count of the nation's farms and ranches and the people who operate them. The census looks at land use and ownership, operator characteristics, production practices, income and expenditures and other topics. It provides the only source of uniform, comprehensive agricultural data for every county in the nation.
NASS will mail out census forms on Dec. 28, 2007, to collect data for the 2007 calendar year. Completed forms are due by Feb. 4, 2008. Producers can return their forms by mail or, for the first time, they have the convenient option of filling out the census online via a secure Web site.
For more information about the 2007 Census of Agriculture visit www.agcensus.usda.gov