AHC encourages participation in USDA census

from the American Horse Council

Washington, DC — The American Horse Council (AHC) is calling on all members of the horse owning community to participate in the 2007 Census of Agriculture to be conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The USDA census, taken every five years, is a count of U.S. farms, ranches and the people who operate them. A link to the Census can be found on the American Horse Council’s Web site at www.horsecouncil.org.

The USDA reports that the 2007 Census of Agriculture will help to measure land use and ownership, operator characteristics, production practices, income and expenditures and many other areas. The AHC wants to ensure that the American horse industry is properly accounted for in the upcoming Census. There are three ways in which horse owners can participate in the USDA’s 2007 Census of Agriculture:

1. If your farm received a survey for census participation in the past (the last census was taken in 2002), your farm will be mailed a survey that you can fill in and mail back.

2. If your farm was not part of the 2002 Census, or you are not sure if you participated, you can fill out a basic USDA census registration form online by following the link from the AHC’s Web site at www.horsecouncil.org. Once this form is submitted online, a survey will be mailed to you.

3. Finally, beginning in late December 2007, the Census survey will be available to all farm owners and operators to fill out online even if they have not pre-registered.

According to an AHC report, the American horse industry has a $102 billion impact on the U.S. economy and supports 1.4 million U.S. jobs. There are more than 9.2 million horses in the United States, making the U.S. horse-owning population the largest in the world.

AHC President, Jay Hickey, stated, “The Census of Agriculture is our chance to stand and be counted. It is everyone’s responsibility to make sure that the equine community is accounted for in the 2007 Census of Agriculture.”

Additionally, information on the 2007 Census of Agriculture can be found on the USDA’s Web site at www.agcesnus.usda.gov.

Census forms will be mailed on December 28, 2007. The mailing will include further instructions about how to log in and respond to the Census via a secure web connection. All Census forms must be completed by February 2, 2008.

For more information about the American Horse Council, please visit www.horsecouncil.org or call (202) 296-4031.

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