Farmers Can Still Take Part In Census

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, more than 22,000 Census of Agriculture forms were submitted by New York farmers.

For producers who missed the deadline, there is still a chance to be counted.

“Every New York farm and ranch is important and needs to be counted in the 2012 Census of Agriculture,” said King Whetstone, NASS, New York Field Office director. “Whether you operate on two acres or 2,000, the information gathered from all producers is important, so it can provide a true picture of U.S. agriculture today and help everyone plan appropriately for tomorrow’s needs.”

Conducted once every five years by NASS, the census provides detailed data covering nearly every facet of U.S. agriculture at the national, state and county levels. It looks at land use and ownership, production practices, expenditures and other factors that affect the way farmers do business. Decision makers and commodity groups at the local and state level use the Census of Agriculture to make decisions that directly impact New York farmers, their businesses and their communities.

The deadline for submitting census forms was Feb. 4, and many New York producers have responded. However, those who have not responded will receive a second copy of the form in the mail to give them another opportunity. Farmers can return their forms by mail or online by visiting a secure website, Federal law requires all agricultural producers to participate in the census and requires NASS to keep all individual information confidential.

“If you have questions about the census or need help filling out your form, I encourage you to visit or call 1-888-4AG-STAT (1-888-424-7828),” Whetstone said. “NASS has helpful tips available and people standing by to provide assistance – we want to help you make the census a successful and complete count of all New York agriculture.”