Data Collection

Agricultural Production Survey: June 2005 (Final)

Agricultural Production Survey: June 2005 (Final) en-NZ



Period-specific information

**Survey information**

This release contains final results from the 2005 Agricultural Production Survey.

This sample survey is part of an ongoing programme of agricultural production statistics conducted in partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.

The eligible population for the 2005 Agricultural Production Survey was 65,000 enterprises.

**Revisions to 2004 dairy cattle estimates**

Users should note the revisions to 2004 estimates relating to dairy cows and heifers in milk or calf. The national estimate of 4,103,000 has increased by 127,000 or 3% on the previously published figure. This revision is the result of new information which has enabled an improvement in estimates. Note that this revision does not affect total dairy cattle numbers for 2004.

**Sample design**

For the 2005 Agricultural Production Survey, a stratified sample design was used to select a sample from the population. In selecting this sample, the population was stratified using regional council, ANZSIC group, and size group. The size groups were determined as follows:

  • For those businesses which responded to the 2002, 2003 or 2004 Agricultural collections, production data was used to form size groups. The variables used to determine size covered a range of livestock and cropping variables. Typically three size groups were formed: small, medium and large.
  • For new businesses or those businesses who did not respond to the 2004 or 2003 Agricultural Production Survey and 2002 Agricultural Production Census, a random sample was taken. Annualised GST and land area (where available) were investigated for forming size groups, but these measures did not prove useful so this group was not stratified further.
  • The 2005 Agriculture Production Survey has a sample size of 31,000 statistical units. There were 12,000 statistical units which were classified as engaging in predominately horticultural activity. The remaining units were engaged in predominately livestock, arable farming or forestry.
  • Horticulture information was collected in 2005 from all businesses whose dominant activity was horticultural. Additional horticultural activity undertaken on non-horticultural farms (eg livestock farms) has been estimated from a sample of these farms.

**2005 Sampling error and imputation levels**

The following table shows the final sampling error and imputation levels for the 2005 Agricultural Production Survey:

DescriptionRelative sampling errors at 95% confidence interval (%)% of total estimate imputed
Ewe hoggets put to ram511
Breeding ewes (2-tooth and older) put to ram810
Total sheep 411
Lambs born to ewe hoggets912
Lambs born to ewes510
Total lambs510
Dairy cows and heifers, in milk or calf613
Total dairy cattle613
Calves born alive to dairy heifers/cows1113
Beef cows and heifers in calf (age 1–2 years)911
Beef cows and heifers in calf (aged 2 years and over)712
Total beef cattle412
Calves born alive to beef heifers/cows611
Female deer mated813
Total deer 813
Fawns born on the farm812
Breeding sows (aged 1 year and over) 147
Mated gilts237
Total pigs86
Piglets weaned on the farm115
Area of new forestry plantings (hectares)2012
Area of forestry replantings (hectares)41
Exotic timber harvested (hectares)31
Exotic timber harvested (cubic metres)21
Wine grapes17
Fresh/process peas208
Sweet corn189

The sampling error in this table shows that, for example, there is a 95 percent chance that the true number of sheep in New Zealand at 30 June 2005 lies within 4 percent of the published estimate. This does not take into account non-sampling error.

The 2005 Agricultural Production Survey includes all statistical units whose main agricultural activity was horticulture. There is however, some horticultural activity on other farm types, such as livestock farms. The horticultural activity carried out on these farms has been estimated from a sample of these. There are sample errors associated with the horticultural activity carried out on these farms.

**Response rates**

The estimated proportion of eligible businesses responding to the 2005 Agricultural Production Survey is 87 percent. These businesses contribute 90 percent of the total agricultural output.

General information

**About the estimates**

Figures in this release are rounded. All percentages in this release are calculated using unrounded figures. The figures from the Agricultural Production Survey may differ from those produced from other sources, such as the National Exotic Forestry Description Survey produced by the Ministry for Primary Industries, the Stock Number Survey from Beef and Lamb New Zealand Limited, and Dairy Statistics from Livestock Improvement Corporation Limited. These surveys use different survey frames and designs.

**Population frame**

The Agricultural Production Survey includes all units identified on Statistics New Zealand's Business Frame as having agricultural activity. The Business Frame is a list of businesses in New Zealand, based on their registration for goods and services tax (GST) with Inland Revenue. It should be noted that the compulsory registration level for GST is $40,000, so there is a partial and unquantifiable coverage of units below this level.

**Survey population**

The survey population for the Agricultural Production Survey is all businesses engaged in 'agricultural production activity' (including livestock, cropping, horticulture, and forestry), or which owned land that was intended for agricultural activity. The survey population includes businesses engaged in agriculture or forestry production as a secondary activity.

**Industries in scope**

The survey population specifically includes businesses classified to the following ANZSIC06 codes:

  • A01 Agriculture
  • A0301 Forestry (excluding native forestry).

It also includes parts of:

  • L671200 Non-residential property operators
  • M691000 Scientific research services (agriculture-related research that involves land holding (excluding universities))
  • P802300 Combined primary and secondary education (agricultural high school operation)
  • P802400 Special school education (special needs education involving agricultural production activity)
  • P810200 Higher education (agriculture-related research undertaken by universities that involves land holding)
  • R912100 Horse and dog racing administration and track operation
  • R912900 Other horse and dog racing activities (racehorse training and racing stables operations)
  • R892200 Nature reserves and conservation parks operation.

The survey population specifically excludes:

  • A019300 Beekeeping
  • part of A019900 Other livestock farming nec (worm farming, pet breeding, dog breeding, cat breeding, bird breeding (except poultry, game birds, ostriches, and emus))
  • A017100 Poultry meat (except growers who also produce eggs for human consumption).

**Population changes**

For the 2002 Census, we sourced the population from the Business Frame and the Inland Revenue Client Register. We checked these sources against industry lists and AgriBase to ensure all large units were included in the population.

After the 2002 Census, we used the Business Frame for the censuses and surveys.

**Survey content changes**

Users should note that there have been changes to the core information collected in agricultural production collections.

Since 1981, agricultural production collections have collected information on livestock and arable farming, horticulture and forestry with the following exceptions:

1999 – the survey collected information on livestock and arable farming only

2000 – the survey collected horticulture production information only

2004 – the surveys collected information on livestock and arable farming, and forestry (horticulture production information was not collected).

**Past questionnaire changes**

Users should also be aware of changes in questionnaire design when making comparisons between 2005 and earlier years. A summary of major questionnaire changes relevant to this release are:


The reference date for forestry estimates has changed. In the 2005 survey a reference date of 31 March 2005 applies. This change was made to allow the forestry section of the Agricultural Production Survey align more closely with the National Exotic Forest Determination Survey (NEFD) run by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.

For the 2002 Census and the 2003 and 2004 surveys, the reference date was 31 December 2001, 2002 and 2003, respectively. Agricultural production collections prior to the 2002 Agriculture Production Census used a reference date of 30 June.

Fawns and velvet

In the 2005 survey this question asked "how many fawns born on your farm were alive at four months?". Previously this question asked "how many fawns and calves were weaned on the farm?".


Users should note that 2004 and 2005 deer figures are not directly comparable with 2002 and 2003 figures. Improvements made to the questions about deer in the 2004 and 2005 surveys have resulted in improved estimates for deer. While it is not possible to quantify the exact extent of this undercoverage, Statistics New Zealand estimates an undercount of about 70,000 deer at 30 June 2002 and 50,000 at 30 June 2003.

Footnotes are on the tables where questionnaire design changes may have had an impact on data comparisons.

**Reliability of survey estimates**

Errors are divided into two classes: sampling error and non-sampling error.

Sampling error arises from selecting a sample of businesses rather than taking a complete enumeration, and is not applicable when there is a census. Estimates for the 2005 survey, as for the 1995, 1996, 1999, 2003 and 2004 surveys, are subject to sampling error. The 1994 and 2002 Agricultural Production Censuses and the 2000 Horticultural Production Survey are not subject to sampling error.

Non-sampling error arises from biases in the patterns of response and non-response, inaccuracies in reporting by respondents, and errors in the recording and classification of data. Statistics New Zealand adopts procedures to detect and minimise these types of errors, but they may still occur and are not easy to quantify.


Statistics New Zealand has imputed values for farmers and growers in the 2005 Agricultural Production Survey who did not return a completed questionnaire. Imputation involves replacing missing items with values based on other information available. The method of imputation used is random 'hot deck' imputation. A proportion of non-respondents were estimated as ineligible. The remaining non-respondents were grouped into imputation cells based on regional council, ANZSIC (Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification) group and previous years production data. Each non-respondent was then randomly assigned to a respondent in the same imputation cell and the farm production data of the respondent was copied across to the non-respondent. In order to improve the imputation process, respondents with uncharacteristically high levels of agricultural activity were removed from their respective imputation cells as it was considered unlikely that any of the non-respondents would have similar characteristics to them.


Data collected and information contained in this release must conform to the provisions of the Statistics Act 1975. This requires that published information maintains the confidentiality of individual respondents. Figures affected by these provisions have been suppressed and are denoted by 'C'.

**Quality suppression**

Data with high sample errors or imputation levels have been suppressed and are indicated by an 'S'.

**More information**

For more information, follow the link from the technical notes of this release on the Statistics NZ website.


While all care and diligence has been used in processing, analysing, and extracting data and information in this publication, Statistics NZ gives no warranty it is error-free and will not be liable for any loss or damage suffered by the use directly, or indirectly, of the information in this publication.

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