Census Countdown Begins for America's Farmers and Ranchers
November 16, 2012

America's farmers and ranchers will have the opportunity to make a positive impact on their communities by taking part in the Census of Agriculture. Conducted every five years by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), the census captures a complete count of all U.S. farms, ranches and those who operate them. 
 
Census data is used by all those who serve farmers and rural communities from federal, state and local governments to agribusinesses and trade associations. Companies and cooperatives can use the information to determine the locations of facilities that will serve agricultural producers. Often legislators use the information when shaping farm policies and programs. 
 
As preparations continue for this year's Census of Agriculture, farmers and ranchers are asked to share their stories, ask questions and talk to fellow producers about this critical effort. Answers to the census help grow your farm future, shape farm programs and boost services for you, your community and your industry. 
 
NASS will mail out census forms in late December, and responses are due by Feb. 4, 2013. Producers also have the option to complete the forms online. The census is your voice, your future and your responsibility. For more information about the census, visit www.agcensus.usda.gov.