2006 Agricultural Census countdown begins, Jun 2006

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June 23, 2006
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)

2006 Agricultural Census countdown begins
The 2006 Agricultural Census countdown has begun with all forms sent out as part of Australia's biggest collection of agricultural statistics. Conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) every five years, it collects production data from primary producers around the country.

At the recent official launch of the Agricultural Census, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, Mr Chris Pearce, and keynote speaker, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Ms Sussan Ley, urged all farmers around the country to "get behind the Census".

The data from the Agricultural Census gives Australian planners and policy makers an understanding of the progress and prospects of all agricultural industries and their products.

More farmers will be taking part in the Agricultural Census than ever before. Currently, about 190,000 Census forms have been posted to farm businesses across Australia including; 60,000 in NSW; 45,000 in Victoria; 40,000 in Queensland; 20,000 in Western Australia; 18,000 in South Australia; 6,000 in Tasmania and 1,000 in the Northern Territory.

For the first time, the ABS is using Australian Business Numbers (ABN) to identify and select participants in the Census. This approach provides better coverage of the agriculture sector than previously available.

Agricultural Census data are essential to both government and industry. For example, the data can be used to support investment projects by providing sound information on the availability of agricultural commodities at the regional level. Other examples include the use of regional data to support claims for exceptional circumstances support, assisting local government planning and identifying changes in the structure of the agriculture industry.

Points to remember;
  • Forms to be filled out as at 30 June 2006
  • Forms posted back by 14 July 2006
  • Preliminary data will be available early 2007

For further information on the Agriculture Census, and copies of the Parliamentary Secretaries' speeches, go to <www.abs.gov.au/about/agriculture> or telephone the helpline on 1800 647 011.