Responding to the Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced Survey



The Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced Survey (VACP) is an annual survey, collecting information on prices paid to growers in Australia for agricultural commodities. Your participation is essential for understanding Australia’s agricultural commodities activity at regional, state and national levels. The statistics from this survey provide vital information which enables industry, business and government to make informed decisions which may assist your community or business going forward. By completing this survey, you help to ensure the results truly reflect the current state of the agricultural sector of the Australian economy.

Need to contact us about completing your VACP survey? You can use our online Business Survey Contact Form to outline the details of your situation and your contact details, and we will be in touch.

Thank you for your participation. We acknowledge and value your time and effort participating in this survey. It is only with the support of people like you that we can continue to produce the statistics that inform important decisions affecting Australia's agriculture industry.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

ABOUT THIS SURVEY


HOW TO COMPLETE THIS SURVEY

ABOUT THE QUESTIONS IN THIS SURVEY

USING VACP STATISTICS

ABOUT THIS SURVEY

What questions are asked in the VACP survey?

This survey collects information on prices paid to growers, and volumes traded, for major agricultural commodities at the national and state and territory levels.

Why has this business been included in the VACP survey?

This survey is answered by a selected group of businesses or organisations that purchase or trade agricultural commodities, from or with producers. Businesses or organisations of a range of sizes are included to ensure accurate representation of the value of Australia's agricultural production, so that the information collected, and the estimates produced, are reflective of all agricultural businesses.

We are a small farm or business: should we be included in this survey?

The ABS considers the activities of small businesses or organisations to be as important as larger ones. Therefore, they cannot be excluded from participation in ABS surveys. Smaller businesses or organisations have specific characteristics and can be impacted differently by government policies and incentives. Answering the questions in this survey helps enable government and others to best design policies that support the broad range of businesses across the states and territories of Australia.

How is the information from this survey used? Why is it important?

Your participation in this survey provides us with data that is essential for producing statistics on the value of agricultural commodities produced in Australia. This data assists policy makers, industry groups and producers with planning and budgeting, and informs important decisions about agricultural issues.

The statistics published from the Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced survey are drawn upon by a wide variety of individuals and organisations in both the public and private sector, with major users including:
  • National Farmers Federation
  • Agriculture service companies
  • Bureau of Meteorology
  • Reserve Bank of Australia
  • Commonwealth departments and agencies, including Department of Treasury and the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES)
  • State and Territory government departments
  • Schools, universities and other educational institutions
  • Market analysts and economists
  • Media

The individual information you provide in the survey is not shared with any individuals or organisations outside of the ABS.

Do we have to answer the questions?

Yes. Under the Census and Statistics Act 1905, you are obliged to provide the information requested by the ABS. All the information you provide will remain strictly confidential.

We recognise that your business may have been impacted by recent unprecedented events, including natural disasters or the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Our aim is to ensure that Australia has access to the best possible information on the social and economic impacts of these events. Your participation in our surveys at this time is critical in informing our country’s response.

By completing this survey, you help to ensure the results truly reflect the current state of the agricultural sector of the Australian economy.

This survey form also asks about any circumstances related to unusual movements or other factors that may have impacted on your ability to provide the required information, and provides you with the opportunity to comment on your circumstances. You can use this comment box to tell us about current business conditions and your expectations for the coming months, as well as provide any further comments on information you have provided in the survey.

We understand this is a difficult time and we are here to help. We conduct follow-up of delayed response and we will assist you if you are having difficulties.

How long will we need to participate in this survey?

The length of time that a business or organisation is selected in any particular survey will depend on factors such as the size of the business or organisation, the number of businesses or organisations with similar characteristics, and how significant the activities of the business or organisations are to the overall results.

This survey will generally include only the larger, more significant, businesses participating in sale/purchase of agricultural produce. Larger businesses or organisations have a higher chance of selection in multiple ABS business surveys. Due to their significant contribution to the overall survey results, they will usually remain in a survey on an ongoing basis.

Smaller businesses or organisations will not generally be included in this survey. However, there may be exceptions to this rule and some small businesses or organisations may be included, particularly if the business or organisation has a significant impact on measurement of commodity prices for example, due to its type or location.

Due to the large number of smaller businesses or organisations in Australia, they are generally not included in more than one survey at a time. However, there will always be some cases where inclusion in more than one survey cannot be avoided. Where possible, we use data from existing administrative data sources to replace, or reduce, direct data collection from smaller businesses.

Do we have to provide figures for this survey right now?

Yes. The industry, business and government users of the statistics produced from this survey need the most accurate and timely information possible so they can make well-informed decisions which impact Australian businesses and communities.

We recognise that your business may have been impacted by recent unprecedented events, including natural disasters or the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. If your ability to respond to this survey has been impacted by these events, please contact us. If you'd like to speak to one of our team or need help providing the requested information, please call us on 1800 685 497 and one of our friendly team will assist you.

Will the information we provide be kept safe, secure, and confidential?

Yes. We take the security of the information you provide to us very seriously. Your completed form and personal information will remain strictly confidential to the ABS. The information is used to calculate statistics and these are only released in the form of aggregated data. The information in this survey is collected under the authority of the Census and Statistics Act 1905. Under the Act, staff of the ABS are obliged to maintain the confidentiality and privacy of information provided.

We comply with the Australian Privacy Principles. If you believe we have breached these principles, please see the information on how to lodge a complaint about privacy matters, contained within our privacy policy.

Will we be paid for our time?

No. There is no provision within the Census and Statistics Act 1905 to reimburse individuals, businesses or organisations for the cost of providing statistical information. In line with other national statistical organisations throughout the world, individuals, businesses and other organisations are asked to supply information for statistical purposes without compensation. It is only with the support of people like you that we can continue to produce the statistics that inform Australia's important decisions.

Do we still need to complete the survey if the business was sold before the beginning of, or during the reference period?

Please complete your survey form with comments indicating the sale of the entity and the date of the sale.

If the business operated by the selected entity (e.g. ABN) was sold during the reference period, then the survey should be completed using figures up to, and including, the day that the business was sold, as well as figures relating to any other new activity undertaken by the selected entity for the remainder of the financial year. Please also provide the name of the new business owners.

Do we still need to complete the survey if the business is still operating but didn't have agricultural production, or have any sale/purchase of agricultural produce, during the reference period?

You will still need to submit your survey with comments stating that your business or organisation did not have any sale/purchase of agricultural produce this year. You do not need to include any figures or zero values.

Do we still need to complete the survey if the business has gone into liquidation or administration during the reference period?

Please complete the survey using figures up to, and including, the day that the business was liquidated or went into administration. It is also important to report the date that this occurred.

If you are unable to access the accounts, then the liquidator or administrator should complete the survey. Where this is not possible, best available estimates of the data should be provided. It is acceptable to provide an estimate based on a percentage change from the previous month’s figures. Where estimates are not possible, please call us on 1800 685 497 and one of our team will be happy to assist you.

We have already completed the survey and have received a reminder letter. What should we do?

If you have received a reminder letter about completing a survey, it is likely that you have returned the survey at the same time as we issued your reminder notice. If you wish to confirm this, please call one of our team on 1800 685 497 and we will check the information against our records.


HOW TO COMPLETE THIS SURVEY

How do we answer the VACP survey?

For this survey, you should have received a letter from us with an enclosed paper form. Please complete the form and return it to us using the Reply Paid envelope provided. If you need help completing the survey, or you are concerned that you have provided incorrect information, please call us on 1800 685 497 and one of our team will be happy to assist you.

If you have not received the survey form we sent you, please call us on 1800 685 497 and one of our team will be happy to assist you.

If you would like more general information about participating in our surveys, please see our Survey Participant Information page.


ABOUT THE QUESTIONS IN THIS SURVEY

How accurate do the figures need to be?

We require information to be as accurate as possible. The information supplied by your business is used to produce estimates which represent businesses within the same industry operating in Australia. The more accurate the figures you supply, the more accurate the estimates will be.

Why can't we see the figures we provided last year in the current survey form?

Due to strict privacy policy guidelines protecting the information submitted by our data providers, we create new survey forms that do not contain previously submitted data.


USING VACP STATISTICS

How can this business use the VACP survey statistics?

We provide statistics free of charge on our website. Statistics produced from this survey are published in Value of Agricultural Commodities Produced, Australia.

Our website also provides additional and up-to-date information over and above our existing statistical releases to enhance understanding of the economic impacts of COVID-19.

How can we provide feedback about our involvement in the VACP survey?

If you have participated in this survey, or any of our other surveys, we want to hear about your experience. We value your feedback and will use it to improve how we work with our survey participants.

You can use the final comment box at the end of this survey form to tell us about your experience participating in this survey, along with any suggested improvements to the form.

You can also use our feedback form to provide us with feedback. For this survey, please select the option "Participation in an ABS Business Survey".

Who can we contact for more information?

For help, or more information about this survey, please call us on 1800 685 497 during business hours. For help outside these hours, please leave a message with your contact details and we will call you back.

You can also use our online Business Survey Contact Form to outline the details of your situation and your contact details, and we will be in touch.