Statistics SA is deploying about 600 field staff to visit commercial farms countrywide. Picture: THE DAILY DISPATCH
Statistics SA is deploying about 600 field staff to visit commercial farms countrywide. Picture: THE DAILY DISPATCH

SA is set to conduct a countrywide census of commercial agriculture amid talk of expropriation without compensation, which has created a lot of uncertainty in the sector.

Statistics SA will from October 15 deploy about 600 field staff to visit commercial farms to establish the number and size of farms, the crop types being farmed in different geographic areas, and the agricultural inputs, like irrigation usage, being used.

The census will cover commercial farming in crop production, livestock farming, fisheries and forestry.

The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation recommends that a country conduct a census of agriculture at least every ten years.

Statistics SA says data collected from the survey will play a key role in clarifying the size and structure of the agriculture sector, its contribution to national accounts, and its employment figures.​