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USDA to Gather Data about New York Farm Labor
New York Ag Connection - 09/20/2022

USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will conduct its biannual Agricultural Labor Survey in October. The survey will collect information about hired labor from more than 2,000 farmers and ranchers in the 11-state Northeastern Region. NASS will publish the data Nov. 23 in the Farm Labor report available on the NASS website. Survey recipients who do not respond by October 19 may be contacted by NASS to arrange an interview or sent a reminder email.

In the survey, NASS asks producers to answer a variety of questions about hired farm labor on their operations, including total number of hired farm workers, total hours worked, and total wages paid for the weeks of July 10-16 and Oct. 9-15. Survey recipients can respond online at through NASS's new respondent portal or by mail. On the portal, producers can complete their surveys, access data visualizations and reports of interest, link to other USDA agencies, and more.

"Agricultural labor data are critical in helping producers when hiring workers and estimating expenses," said King Whetstone, director of the NASS Northeastern Regional Field Office. "The data that farm operators provide through NASS's Agricultural Labor Survey also allow federal policymakers to base farm labor policies on accurate information."

USDA and the U.S. Department of Labor use the survey data to estimate the demand for and availability of seasonal agricultural workers, establish minimum wage rates for agricultural workers, and administer farm labor recruitment and placement service programs.

"By asking about two separate time periods each time we collect these data during the year, we are able to publish biannual data and capture seasonal variation," said Whetstone. "This approach reduces the number of times we survey farms, while ensuring that accurate and timely data are available."

Participants are encouraged to visit for further information and assistance with completing this survey. All previous Farm Labor publications are available at the NASS website.

For more information on NASS surveys and reports, call the Northeastern Regional Field Office at (800) 498-1518.

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