2017 USDA Census of Agriculture

— Written By Jody Carpenter and last updated by

During the month of December, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) began mailing the 2017 Census of Agriculture to the nation’s producers. Conducted once every five years, the census aims to get a complete and accurate picture of American agriculture and impacts everyone involved in the industry. The following are some common questions about the census.

What is the Census of Agriculture?

The Census of Agriculture is a count of farm operations of all sizes which produced and sold, or normally would have sold, $1,000 or more of agricultural product in 2017.

Why is the Census important?

The Census of Agriculture is the only uniform, comprehensive, and impartial agricultural data for every county in the nation. By completing the census application, producers can show the nation and its stakeholders the value of agriculture. The data collected from the census is used by farmers, businesses and government to influence decisions that will shape the future of the industry.

Do I need to complete the Census?

Responding to the Census of Agriculture is required by law under Title 7 USC 2204(g) Public Law 105-113. The same law requires NAAS to keep all information confidential and to use the data only for statistical purposes.

Submission is easier this year because an online application is offered and can be accessed at agcounts.usda.gov; You will be prompted to enter your survey code, which can be located on your survey mailing label.

If you have any question regarding the Census of Agriculture or need assistance completing the application please contact Jody Carpenter, Agriculture Extension Agent at jody_carpenter@ncsu.edu or 252-232-2262.

Census of Agriculture

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