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The 2021 Agricultural census

This week, DEFRA have announced the opening of the 2021 agricultural census for all commercial farms in England.

The census runs every 10 years and will provide DEFRA with data to identify industry priorities, allocate financial assistance and create policies which meet the needs of farmers. Comparing these results from data gathered over the previous 150 years can help to spot trends and understand the development of UK agriculture.

Farming businesses should have started receiving either electronic or paper forms this week.

Completion is mandatory and DEFRA encourage farmers to respond within 2 weeks.

What data will the census gather and why?

The 2021 census aims to gather detailed information on the following:


- The number of principle farmers, managers, regular/casual workers, and the time spent on farm work.

- This data helps to provide a profile on the agricultural workforce and its changes over time.

Land use and cropping

- Data on cropping areas, this will help to compare data from upland and lowland farms and give updated figures to the quantity of organic land in England.

- Crop and yield data will provide harvest estimates, these will be used to monitor grain availability throughout the year.


- Updated livestock numbers will help monitor changes over time and compare this to production figures.

- Knowing where livestock are located throughout the UK will help assess risks and help control any disease outbreaks.

For further information on the census, or for help in completing it, please get in touch!


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