1301.6.55.001 - Tasmanian Statistical News, Mar 2011  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 08/03/2011  Final
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Upcoming changes to Tasmanian statistical publications
News from the Environment and Agriculture Business Statistics Centre
Australian Health Survey


Readers may have noticed that the latest issue of Tasmanian State and Regional Indicators (cat. no. 1307.6), December 2010 issue, released in February 2011, was the FINAL issue. This is part of a review of the whole suite of Tasmanian publications occurring over the next few months.

A new national publication is currently being developed for release in July 2011. The new product, State and Territory Statistical Indicators (cat. no. 1367.0), will make it easier to locate comparable data across the jurisdictions as it will have consistent content for all states and territories. The data content will also be more timely than at present, with updates published within a few days of their first release to the ABS website rather than quarterly or annually. Data will be presented graphically, along with some descriptive and explanatory comments, and occasional feature articles.

The new publication will effectively replace the content of our existing publications Tasmanian Key Indicators (cat. no. 1304.6) and Tasmanian Statistical News (cat. no. 1301.6.55.001). These two publications will also be discontinued, as from the March issue.

Images: Agricultural scenes

With a couple of major surveys in the pipeline for 2011, as well as preparation of the normal monthly ABS publications, the efforts of the Hobart Agriculture Business Statistics Centre (BSC) have been intently focussed on the successful release of those publications in the first part of this year.

The ABS is conducting its two major censuses in 2011. The larger, in terms of scope, is the Population and Housing Census in August when official ABS collectors will be calling on all homes throughout the nation, leaving census forms for later collection and publication of the data. This survey is held every five years, as is the Agricultural Census, also set down for the second half of 2011. Agricultural census forms will be sent to every agricultural business in Australia in June and ABS expects to be able to publish preliminary data before the end of this year.

Just released in February this year is the publication Value of Principal Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia, Preliminary, 2009 -10 (cat. no. 7501.0). This publication puts a dollar value on the gross value of major commodities such as crops, livestock and livestock products. The data was collected as part of last year's Agricultural Resource Management Survey (ARMS), the preliminary results of which were published on the ABS website in November 2010. The publication details the data by state as well as nationally so Tasmanian production figures can be easily identified. Final estimates for 2009 -10 are due for release in June 2011.

A new ABS survey will be undertaken in 2011, to assist the Commonwealth Department of Treasury to determine foreign agriculture ownership in Australia. The Agricultural Land and Water Ownership Survey (ALWOS) is intended to address the current lack of information available on the extent of foreign ownership of agricultural businesses, agricultural land and water entitlements in Australia. The information to be collected is not currently available via other ABS collections or external data sources. Survey forms will be sent out in March and final data is expected to be released in September 2011.

The Agriculture and Environment BSC will be releasing the latest edition of its e-magazine Ag Mag - The Agricultural Newsletter (cat. no. 7101.0) at the end of March. This edition gives an insight into the latest agricultural news as well as previewing future agricultural collections. Written in a lighter style, it's worth a look.

Further information on the ABS' Agricultural Statistics Program can be found on the ABS website, under 'Agriculture" on the Topics @ a Glance page.

Images: Health scenes

In the next few days, the ABS will commence the first Australian Health Survey (AHS), the biggest health survey ever conducted in Australia.

The AHS builds on previous health surveys, allowing comparisons of health information over time such as obesity, smoking, health conditions and how we manage our health.

The AHS will collect new information about what we eat and drink, how active we are and biomedical measures. These new biomedical measures will reveal new insights into heart and kidney disease, diabetes and other chronic conditions by examining health risk factors such as cholesterol, glucose and sodium levels. The survey will be able to compare these biomedical risk factors with aspects of our lifestyle for those that are healthy and those who are not.

While the biomedical component of the survey is voluntary, the ABS encourages participation as this information will help Australians to be more knowledgeable and healthy as a nation, through better understanding of how our lifestyles and diets impact on our health.

The survey has been planned in consultation with a wide range of health stakeholders. The new components of the survey have been made possible through additional funding from the Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing and the National Heart Foundation of Australia.

The first wave of the survey will be conducted over 2011-12 with results available in late 2012 and will be used by a wide range of health researchers, public health advocates, government, clinicians and community health organisations. The information will be used to identify health issues, design and evaluate new health programs and understand what affects our health.

Further information and detailed questions and answers are available on the ABS website at www.abs.gov.au/australianhealthsurvey