Australia: Have your say to help improve ABS collection methods

As a primary producer of horticultural commodities, you will no doubt have been asked to complete the compulsory Agricultural Census and other Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) surveys.

These surveys often come with a large administrative burden for greenlife growers.

Following extended advocacy and liaison with NGIA, ABS has recently made changes to the Rural Environmental Agricultural Commodities Survey (REACS) to improve the relevance of questioning for nursery production businesses. Following changes to the ABS survey the reported value of nursery production increased by more than 30% in two years.

Now, Deakin University is working on a project to help the ABS understand the respondent burden on growers when completing ABS questionnaires and to look toward alternative sources of horticultural data.

They are very interested to speak with greenlife producers across Australia for their insights and feedback. Appointments for over-the-phone feedback sessions can be made for virtually any time between now and mid-December.

For more information, contact Jennifer Jones at Deakin University on 03 9246 8383 (dial the extension 95216 when prompted) or at, or contact Rose Elphick-Darling 03 9246 8810 or at

Results from the discussions will influence the development of the 2021 Agricultural Census program.

For more information:
Nursery & Garden Industry Australia

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