America's farmers and ranchers will have the opportunity to make their voices heard and help shape the future of agriculture for years to come.
That opportunity will come in mailboxes in the form of the 2007 Census of Agriculture. Conducted every five years by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), the census is a complete count of the nation's farms and ranches and the people who operate them.
Policy makers factor census data into decisions concerning agricultural and rural programs. The American Sheep Industry Association (ASI) utilizes this data as it prepares briefs and comments about the industry. All sheep and goat operations, regardless of size, are encouraged to respond.
NASS mailed out census forms Dec. 28, 2007, to collect data for the 2007 calendar year. Completed forms are due back by Feb. 4, 2008. Producers can return their forms by mail or fill the census out online via a secure Web site at www.agcensus.usda.gov.
Source: ASI Weekly for December 28, 2007