State Agriculture Commissioner Darrel J. Aubertine encourages farmers across the state to fill out the U.S. Census of Agriculture.
Currently, the New York State response rate stands at 68 percent. USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service has mailed a final copy to those producers who have not yet responded. They will be making follow up phone calls and site visits in the coming weeks and months to ensure as accurate a count as possible.
The U.S. Census of Agriculture is very similar to the U.S. Census, except it is done every five years instead of every ten. According to NASS, it is the only source of consistent and comprehensive agricultural data for every state and county in the nation. The Agriculture Census examines farms, land value, agricultural production, farm practices, expenditures, demographic data, marketing information and other factors that affect the way farmers conduct their business. These data, in turn, are used at the federal, state and local levels to influence agricultural policy.
New York Farm Bureau has produced a video outlining the importance of the Census of Agriculture, which can be viewed at YouTube.com.
New York farmers can return their Census of Agriculture forms online at www.agcensus.usda.gov. For tips on how to complete the census, call 1-888-424-7828.
To look at the most recent Census of Agriculture, visit www.agcensus.usda.gov.