USDA Survey of Irrigators Under Way

Published in the February 2014 Issue Published online: Feb 20, 2014
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USDA’s Census for Agriculture collects critical information about the business of growing food. A supplement survey looks specifically at irrigation issues. The 2013 Farm and Ranch Irrigation Survey is under way and the deadline is Feb. 10, 2014.

The survey, which in past years has included a wide range of information about irrigation practices, timing and other issues, is sent to farms, ranches and horticulture operations to get information. The survey looks at water sources, amounts of water used, acres irrigated by type of system, yield and other issues.

It’s an in-depth view of how irrigation practices are changing and is conducted once every five years. USD’’s National Agriculture Statistics Service will survey a sample of all farmers who indicated on their 2012 census form that they use irrigation in their operation.

Growers who filled out their Ag Census surveys saw irrigation questions, but USDA notes in a Q&A briefing on its website that this is just preliminary information. The 2013 survey is specific to irrigation and “will allow NASS to publish more comprehensive information on this important practice.”

If you’ve received the survey, USDA reminds farmers that since this survey is part of the 2012 Census of Agriculture, U.S. law requires all those who receive the survey to respond.

The agency notes that all individual information is kept confidential. The reports from the survey are tabulated totals that share no individual information. Growers can learn more by visiting