7105.0.55.004 - National Agricultural Statistics Review - Final Report, 2015  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/07/2015  First Issue
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The NASR developed a framework of five enduring goals for Australia’s agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries. The framework was based on a desktop review of strategic plans, policy statements and mission statements by agricultural institutions and industry bodies13. The statistical assets that target these enduring goals are likely to meet the high level information needs of the agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries. In this way the enduring goals framework provides a means of ensuring the ongoing relevance and sustainability of the agricultural statistical system over time.

The enduring goals encompass the economic, social and environmental dimensions of the agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries and reflect the fact that changes in these industries can affect other aspects of the economy, including health policy, food safety, renewable energy production, emergency management, rural development and international trade competitiveness. This interconnectedness means that the need for information about agriculture, fisheries and forestry extends well beyond those industries themselves14.

The five enduring goals are:

1. competitive and profitable agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries, encompassing a number of the economic dimensions of agriculture, including drivers of profitability and economic performance measures; the agricultural supply chain and information on the quality of commodities and value-added products; and innovation and R&D
2. prosperous communities, reflecting the economic and social benefits accruing to communities from agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries, including measures of employment, availability of services, food security and values that the community holds in relation to those industries
3. sustainable natural resource use, which captures the environmental dimensions of agriculture and seeks to provide an understanding of the sustainability of natural resources utilised by the agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries, management of these resources and the effect of these industries on the environment
4. growing trade and market access, reflecting the importance of the ability to access and maintain markets both domestically and internationally, including enablers for growing trade and market access such as certification and trade arrangements
5. protecting animal, plant and human health and welfare, which is fundamental to the economic, social and environmental viability of agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries, and encompasses elements of biosecurity, food safety, chemical use and regulation, and animal welfare and disease management.

Figure 1 presents the enduring goals and associated data themes. The data themes assist in describing the range of economic, social and biophysical statistics that inform each goal. The data themes are not exclusive to particular goals - there are statistics that inform multiple goals. For example, employment statistics could be used to inform both ‘competitive and profitable agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries’ and ‘prosperous communities’. Primary data collections in agriculture, fisheries and forestry are listed in Tables 5, 6 and 7 in Appendix 3.

Figure 1 - Enduring goals for Australian agriculture, fisheries and forestry, and supporting data themes
Image: Enduring goals for Australian agriculture, fisheries and forestry, and supporting data themes

The enduring goals were strongly supported by stakeholders during the first phase of consultation15 as largely reflective of the Australian agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries.

Chapters two and three of the report describe the current agricultural statistics system, the key statistical producers and datasets, and stakeholder feedback on the extent to which the system is meeting current needs. The remaining chapters set out a possible way forward, identifying the elements of best practice agricultural statistical systems internationally, assessing Australia’s current system against these elements, and proposing a set of actions to achieve a best practice agricultural statistical system.


13 Documents reviewed included the Australian Department of Agriculture Strategic Statement 2013, National Farmers Federation Blueprint for Australian Agriculture 2013-2020, Dairy Australia’s A Strategic Framework for keeping the Australian dairy industry in business for the long term December 2012, United States Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistics Services Strategic Plan 2010-2015, and New Zealand Ministry of Agriculture/Statistics New Zealand Agriculture, Horticulture, and Forestry Domain Plan 2009.
14 Statistics Canada 2011, Agriculture Statistics Program Review
15 ABS 2013, Discussion Paper: Submission Process for the National Agricultural Statistics Review, 2013-14, cat. no. 7105.0.55.002, ABS, Canberra.