NASS Updates Farmer Computer/Internet Usage

Chuck Zimmerman

NASSAlmost 60% of of U. S. farms now have internet access and the use of DSL has become the most common method of accessing it. The National Agricultural Statistics Service just released its latest Farm Computer Usage and Ownership survey results. Here’s some key findings. Notice how much higher the numbers are for farmers with incomes over $100,000!

DSL was the most common method of accessing the Internet, with 36 percent of U.S. farms using it, up from 27 percent in 2007. In 2007, dialup was the most common method of accessing the internet. Dialup access dropped from 47 percent in 2007 to 23 percent in 2009. Satellite and wireless were each reported as the primary internet access methods on 13 percent of those U.S. farms with Internet access. Cable was reported as the primary access method
on 11 percent of the farms.

A total of 59 percent of U.S. farms now have Internet access, compared with 57 percent in 2007. Sixty-four percent of farms have access to a computer in 2009, the same level as 2007. The proportion of U.S. farms owning or leasing a computer in 2009, at 61 percent, was up 1 percentage point from 2007. Farms using computers for their farm business increased 1 percentage point from 2007 to 36 percent in 2009.

In 2009, 81 percent of U.S. farms with sales and government payments of $250,000 or more have access to a computer, 79 percent own or lease a computer, 69 percent are using a computer for their farm business, and 76 percent have Internet access. For farms with sales and government payments between $100,000 and $249,999, the figures are: 70 percent have access to a computer, 67 percent own or lease a computer, 52 percent are using a computer for their farm business, and 63 percent have Internet access. Of the farms with sales and government payments between $10,000 and $99,999, 62 percent reported having computer access, 59 percent own or lease a computer, 38 percent use a computer for their farm business, and 57 percent have Internet access.

For crop farms, 65 percent have computer access and 40 percent use a computer for their farm business in 2009, up 1 and 3 percentage points from 2007, respectively. Internet access for crop farms has increased to 60 percent in 2009, compared with 56 percent in 2007. In 2009, a total of 63 percent livestock farms have computer access and 58 percent have Internet access.

Farming, Internet, USDA

Comments 3

  1. This new USDA/NASS study tracks closely to Successful Farming’s Farmers Use of Media Study when examining high-speed internet access among farmers. Although about 56% of the total farm population accesses the internet through some sort of non-dialup service, the Successful Farming research shows a significant spike in high speed access among larger and younger farmers.

    Roughly 72% of the farmers under the age of 40 and roughly 68% of farmers over 1000 acres of row-crop are likely to have high speed internet access. In contrast less than 45% of farmers over the age of 60 and under 500 acres have high speed access.

    There are noticeable differences in media consumption habits of farmers based on their age and size of operation.

  2. This new USDA/NASS study tracks closely to Successful Farming’s Farmers Use of Media Study when examining high-speed internet access among farmers. Although about 56% of the total farm population accesses the internet through some sort of non-dialup service, the Successful Farming research shows a significant spike in high speed access among larger and younger farmers.

    Roughly 72% of the farmers under the age of 40 and roughly 68% of farmers over 1000 acres of row-crop are likely to have high speed internet access. In contrast less than 45% of farmers over the age of 60 and under 500 acres have high speed access.

    There are noticeable differences in media consumption habits of farmers based on their age and size of operation.

  3. This new USDA/NASS study tracks closely to Successful Farming’s Farmers Use of Media Study when examining high-speed internet access among farmers. Although about 56% of the total farm population accesses the internet through some sort of non-dialup service, the Successful Farming research shows a significant spike in high speed access among larger and younger farmers.

    Roughly 72% of the farmers under the age of 40 and roughly 68% of farmers over 1000 acres of row-crop are likely to have high speed internet access. In contrast less than 45% of farmers over the age of 60 and under 500 acres have high speed access.

    There are noticeable differences in media consumption habits of farmers based on their age and size of operation.

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