The Ag Census shows the importance and value of agriculture on reservation lands and provides the public and Tribal officials with crop and livestock information. It is important that every producer be reflected in the data so that no operation or community is underserved in the years to come.
“If we do not get counted accurately, the decision-makers, the policymakers, Congress isn’t going to have the right information to put together the programs that best serve our farm industry.”
– Zach Ducheneaux, Intertribal Agriculture Council
WASHINGTON, Jan. 29, 2018 –The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) reminds our nation’s farmers and ranchers that the deadline for the 2017 Census of Agriculture is one week away. Producers should respond online at www.agcounts.usda.gov or by mail by February 5. The online questionnaire offers new timesaving features.
The Census of Agriculture is the only NASS questionnaire mailed to every producer across the country and is conducted just once every five years. The Census provides a complete account of the industry, its changes, and emerging trends. Census data are widely used, often relied on when developing the Farm Bill and other farm policy, and when making decisions about disaster relief, community planning, technology development, and more.
“We are asking producers to help show our nation the value and importance of American agriculture,” said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. “We need to hear from all of our farmers and ranchers, no matter how big or how small their part of agriculture. The Census is their voice, their future, their opportunity. Please respond now.”
Everyone who received the 2017 Census of Agriculture questionnaire is to return it, even if they are not currently farming. The first few qualifying questions on the form will determine whether completing the entire questionnaire is necessary. After the February 5 deadline, NASS will begin following-up with additional mailings, e-mails, phone calls, and personal appointments. To avoid these additional contacts, farmers and ranchers are asked to complete their Census as soon as possible.
“It is important that every producer respond to the Census of Agriculture so that they are represented and reflected in the data,” said NASS Administrator Hubert Hamer. “These statistics can directly impact producers for years. Without their input, our hardworking farmers and ranchers risk being underserved.”
The Census is the only source of uniform, comprehensive, and impartial agriculture data for every state and county in the nation. Producers are required by law to respond; NASS is required by the same federal law to keep all information confidential, use the data only for statistical purposes, and only publish in aggregate form to prevent disclosing the identity of any individual producer or farm operation.
For more information about the 2017 Census of Agriculture, visit www.agcensus.usda.gov or call (800) 727-9540.
NASS is the federal statistical agency responsible for producing official data about U.S. agriculture and is committed to providing timely, accurate, and useful statistics in service to U.S. agriculture. We invite you to provide occasional feedback on our products and services. Sign up at http://bit.ly/NASS_Subscriptions and look for “NASS Data User Community.”
The OneUSDA Internship program will pair with USDA’s existing internship opportunities to ensure lots of paths to explore agriculture with USDA.
- Applicants will be able to select their specialty area of interest and desired locations (up to three).
- Job opening: Monday, January 22, 2018. Job closing: Friday, January 26, 2018.
- You will need to submit a resume, cover letter, and informal transcript – in addition to responding to the questionnaires contained in the job application.
- Candidates for the internship must meet the qualification requirements described below for the occupational series of the position to be filled:
- GS-2: High school diploma or equivalent
- GS-3: Completion of 1 academic year of post-high school study
- GS-4: Completion of 2 academic years of post-high school study or associate’s degree
- GS-5: Completion of 4 academic years of post-high school study leading to a bachelor’s degree
Visit us NO LATER THAN January 26 at https://www.usajobs.gov/ (Announcement number: AG-01-2018-0023) to check out this exciting new opportunity!
IFAI Director Janie Simms Hipp testified before the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs to discuss what Indian Country has at stake in the upcoming Farm Bill reauthorization.
To view the entire hearing, click here.
The Senate Committee on Indian Affairs held an oversight hearing “Breaking New Ground in Agribusiness Opportunities in Indian Country” on January 17, 2018. The committee has jurisdiction to study the unique issues facing Native American, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian peoples and to propose legislation to address these issues.
Panelists Chairman John Berrey of the Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma and Janie Simms Hipp, Director of the Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative.
The committee heard testimony from panelists Janie Simms Hipp, Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative director; Chairman John Berrey, Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma; Lionel Haskie, Navajo Agricultural Products Industry; and Diane Cullo, Advisor to the Secretary and Director of Partnerships & Public Engagement at the USDA.
“Agribusiness is critical for Indian Country, and it’s a growing industry,” Senator John Hoeven, chair of the committee, said. “According to the most recent Census of Agriculture, there was a 9 percent increase in American Indian principal farm operators. This committee has worked to reduce the regulatory burden in Indian Country, and it is time we do the same for the growing industry of Indian agribusiness.”
The hearing was held as Congress continues to work on the 2018 farm bill reauthorization. During the hearing, Hoeven asked invited panelists to discuss proposals to encourage food and agricultural production in Indian Country by leveraging resources and strengthening the relationship between the USDA and Indian tribes.
The panel responded to questions from the committee concerning a broad array of topics including the removal of regulatory barriers and “638” self-governance authority, federal feeding programs, economic impacts of agricultural development, the persistence of food insecurity in Indian Country, and the role of traditional foods and agricultural practices.
Photo by Colby Duren
Much of the discussion was prompted and informed by the recently released “Regaining Our Future” report, prepared by Hipp and IFAI Policy Director Colby Duren, and commissioned by the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community through the Seeds of Native Health campaign. The report, published in collaboration with the Intertribal Agriculture Council, National Congress of American Indians, and Intertribal Timber Council, is an assessment of the risks and opportunities that Indian Country has at stake in the upcoming Farm Bill legislation.
The Seeds of Native Health campaign is also coordinating the formation of a Native Farm Bill Coalition to serve as an advocacy and advisory group to Congress during the drafting of the bill. Any tribes, Native organizations, and non-Native allied groups which support the dietary health, agricultural, conservation, food sovereignty, and economic development interests of Native Americans are encouraged to join the Coalition, shape its agenda, and contribute to its advocacy efforts.
Any tribal government, intertribal organization, or other group that is interested in joining the Coalition can download a draft resolution or letter of support.
For more information, or if you are an organization interested in joining the Native Farm Bill Coalition, please visit the Native Farm Bill Coalition webpage.
Majors in food, agriculture, natural resources, and other related fields of study are highly sought. However, opportunities are available to students in many other fields such as business, communications, English, accounting, economics, information technology, and more.
Deadline: Sunday, February 9, 2018
CLICK HERE to download an application!
Majors in food, agriculture, natural resources, and other related fields of study are highly sought. However, opportunities are available to students in many other fields such as business, communications, English, accounting, economics, information technology, and more. All interested and qualified 1994 students are encouraged to apply.
- Agricultural Business/Management
- Agricultural Economics
- Agricultural Engineering/Mechanics
- Agricultural Production and Technology
- Agronomy or Crop Science
- Animal Sciences
- Computer Science
- Environmental Science
- Farm and Range Management
- Food Sciences/Technology
- Forestry and Related Sciences
- Home Economics/Nutrition
- Natural Resources Management
- Soil Conservation/Soil Science
- Other related disciplines (e.g. non-medical biological sciences, pre-veterinary medicine)