The Census of Agriculture is a complete count of U.S. farms and ranches and the people who operate them. Even small plots of land - whether rural or urban - growing fruit, vegetables or some food animals count if $1,000 or more of such products were raised and sold, or normally would have been sold, during the Census year. The Census of Agriculture, taken only once every five years, looks at land use and ownership, operator characteristics, production practices, income and expenditures. For America’s farmers and ranchers, the Census of Agriculture is their voice, their future, and their opportunity.
The 2017 Census of Agriculture is the 29th Federal census of agriculture and the fifth conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). The U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census conducted the census of agriculture for 156 years (1840-1996). The 1997 Appropriations Act contained a provision that transferred the responsibility for the census of agriculture to NASS.