At the 2023 National Association of Farm Broadcasters Convention, Farm Director KC Sheperd had the chance to visit with the National Operations Division Director at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Joe Prusacki, about the latest agriculture survey data from the Census of Agriculture.
Prusacki said the 2022 Census of Agriculture data is scheduled to be released on February 13th, 2024. In this most recent survey, Prusacki said producers have not been as responsive as they have been in past years.
“We are probably between a 60 and 70 percent return rate this year,” Prusacki said.
The data collected for the survey, Prusacki said, is for the benefit of ag producers all over the nation.
“The Census of Agriculture is really the only source where you can get that microlevel- that county-level information,” Prusacki said.
An important benefit for ag producers that the survey helps with, Prusacki said, is determining the funding needed for certain programs.
“The Census of Agriculture becomes a very useful tool when you are looking at what is going on in a particular community, what are the needs, and how can the government help you,” Prusacki said.
Because this information is used to aid producers in various ways, Prusacki emphasized the urgency to respond.
“When somebody doesn’t respond, it adds to what is called the variability of the data, so when people respond, we know more,” Prusacki said.