The National Agricultural Statistical Service, or NASS, will soon mail out the 2012 farm census forms to farmers nationwide. The census, which will not be complete for about a year, compiles valuable data on farm demographics, crop production, land use, economic viability, and information about farm owners and operators.
Compiling accurate information on the state of the farm sector is vitally important for the federal government. Farm programs, farm loans, subsidies, crop insurance premiums, and countless federal programs are largely determined through consultation with farm census information.
In addition, the census helps trade officials by offering them statistical data regarding the various agricultural products that they are promoting overseas. Given the importance of farm exports to the US economy, the agricultural census is a vital part of American overseas trade.
In a statement made earlier this month, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack urged farmers to take part in the census, stating, “I strongly encourage all farmers, no matter how large or small their operation, to promptly complete and return their Census, so they can voice to the nation the value and importance of agriculture.”
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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer