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Thursday, February 5, 2015
10 facts about the USDA's nationwide Organic Survey
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From WATTAgNet: The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently sent out its Organic Survey to gather detailed data on U.S. organic agriculture production. The survey is a complete inventory of all known organic producers that are certified, exempt from certification and transitioning to certified organic production. Why is the survey taken and why might it matter to you? Read on to find out …
1. The last Organic Survey was taken in 2008
2. Total organic product sales by farms and ranches in the U.S. have increased 83 percent from 2007-2012
3. The USDA’s Risk Management Agency, farm organizations, scientists and suppliers all use the data from the survey
4. The survey was mandated by a provision of the Fiscal Year 2014 omnibus funding bill
5. The sales from 14,326 farms with certified or exempt organic production totaled over $3.1 billion in 2012
6. Producers must gross less than $5,000 annually from organic sales to be exempt from certification
7. The information from the survey could be used to calculate disaster payments for producers
8. Data from the Organic Survey will help provide the industry with information to use in justifying research projects and fund requests to benefit producers
9. Federal law (Title 7, U.S. Code) requires all producers who receive a form to respond
10. You can attend a webinar to learn more about the survey, January 29, from 3:30-4:30 p.m. ET by going to http://www.readytalk.com and entering code 7202000
"Total organic product sales by farms and ranches in the United States have continued to grow over the last few years, increasing by 83 percent between 2007 and 2012," said USDA Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden. "These latest census results show the continued interest in organic agriculture among consumers, producers, and businesses. As we look to the future, the important information we gather will be crucial to capturing the strong private and public sector support to sustain the continued growth of this industry." Conducted by USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), the Organic Survey is a result of this growing demand for organic agricultural products and data. The survey looks at many aspects of organic agriculture during the 2014 calendar year – from production and marketing practices, to income and expenses. It also focuses on the future of organic production by including producers transitioning to certified organic agriculture.