National agricultural census operations and COVID-19
The census of agriculture seeks to collect data on seasonal agricultural activities. Accordingly, countries schedule census enumeration periods to ensure that the required data is collected at the right time. While a delay in census activities may not be critical for the population and housing census and household surveys, it can result in the loss of a full year’s data for the census of agriculture if the agricultural season is missed. Currently, 62 countries are preparing (45 countries) or have conducted (17 countries) censuses of agriculture in the WCA 2020 round. A rapid appraisal and informal consultations with national agricultural census authorities reveal that some 34 countries reported delays or suspension of several census activities, involving mainly planning, preparation of census instruments, staff recruitment and fieldwork.