Statistics Canada is still waiting for the completed 2006 Census of Agriculture questionnaire to be returned by some farms in Eastern Ontario.
It is in the best interests of all farmers that they complete and return their census form, according to StasCan. Governments, farm organizations and livestock associations must agree on basic statistical facts about agriculture in order to plan for the future. Census information can provide valuable information during difficult economic times.
The Census of Agriculture is mandatory because it provides information that is critical to virtually every sector of the agricultural industry. The census is the only source of small-area agricultural data at the county, rural municipality or crop district level. The value of small-area data is more important than ever as farmers confront the challenges posed by the BSE crisis and the threat of avian influenza. The census will provide farmers with solid information on how best to proceed.
Livestock operations hold a prominent place in Ontario farming. In 2001, beef operations formed the greatest share of all farms at 24 per cent, followed by grain and oilseed farms at 22 per cent and dairy operations which were the third largest class at 11 per cent. Ontario ranked third among the provinces in terms of total cattle - after Alberta and Saskatchewan - with just over 2.1 million head. In 2001, the province had 35 per cent of the total number of hens and chickens in Canada and 27 per cent of all sheep and lambs in the country.
StatsCan is legally obligated to protect the confidentiality of the information provided by farmers on their census form.
Statistics Canada asks farmers to complete the enclosed census form and mail it back in the yellow envelope provided. If preferred, it can be completed at www.census2006.ca using the access code on the questionnaire. If you have any questions, call 1 877 594-2006.