The first decennial agricultural census in the Philippines was conducted in 1960, followed by censuses carried out in 1971, 1981, 1991 and 2002. The 2012 Census of Agriculture and Fishery (CAF) is the sixth in a series of decennial agricultural censuses and the fifth in the series of decennial censuses of fisheries to be conducted in the country.
The Census of Agriculture and Fisheries (CAF) is a large-scale government undertaking, geared towards the collection and compilation of basic information on the agriculture and fishery sectors in the Philippines. Over the years, the CAF has been a source of comprehensive statistics on agriculture for the use of the general public, government, business industry, research and academic institutions. The 2012 CAF was the sixth decennial agriculture census undertaken by the then National Statistics Office (NSO). The collection of agriculture data was first included in the Economic Census (EC) in 1903, 1918, 1939 and 1948. The Census of Agriculture was undertaken separately from the EC in 1960 and conducted simultaneously with the Census of Fisheries, beginning in 1971 and every 10 years thereafter. These two census activities were collectively known as the CAF. The 2012 CAF was conducted from February 25, 2013 to April 30, 2013. This operation primarily covered all households engaged in agriculture, aquaculture and fishing to obtain data about the operation of holding/farm, aquafarm and fishing. A community-based module was also administered in all barangays. This community-based module provided information on facilities, input dealers and service providers related to agriculture, aquaculture and fishing present or available in the barangay. This module also gathered the dominant terrain of the barangay as well as the destructive natural calamities experienced in the barangay during the past five years.
Objectives of 2012 CAF
The 2012 CAF was envisioned to achieve the following objectives:
1. Determine the structural characteristics of agriculture and fishery sectors,
2. Provide sampling frame for the conduct of statistical surveys on crop production, livestock and poultry raising, and other agricultural undertakings,
3. Provide basic data for use in national as well as sub-national development planning, and
4. Provide data on agriculture, aquaculture, and fishery facilities and services in the barangay.
Kind of Data
Census/enumeration data [cen]
Unit of Analysis
In line with the objectives of 2012 CAF, the following data items were included in the census:
1. Name of holder/operator/hired manager and type of agricultural/aquaculture/fishing activity,
2. Legal status of the agricultural holder/operator and/or aquaculture and fishing activity,
3. Characteristics of the holding/farm such as physical area, number of parcels, etc. and characteristics of parcels such as area, location, tenure status, main use and irrigation,
4. Temporary and permanent crops, planting pattern, area planted, and number of trees/vines/hills,
5. Livestock and poultry raised,
6. Characteristics of the aquafarm such as type, location, area/volume, water environment, and the type of species cultured,
7. Characteristics of the fishing activity such as category of fishing, tonnage of boat/vessel used, number of boats/vessels used, and kind and number of fishing gears/accessories/devices,
8. Selected socio-demographic and economic characteristics of the household members, and
9. Information on the barangay facilities, input dealers and service providers related to agriculture, aquaculture and fisheries.
Agriculture & Rural Development
Forests & Forestry
Food (production, crisis)
Land (policy, resource management)
The statistical units of the CAF were agricultural holdings or farms, aquaculture farms (household-based and establishment-based), and units engaged in fishing activities (household-based and establishment-based). The agricultural holding (farm) was defined as "any piece or pieces of land used wholly or partly for any agricultural activity, such as growing of crops, tending of livestock (including poultry) and other agricultural activities, and operated as one technical unit, by one person alone or with others, regardless of title, legal form, size or location.
Producers and sponsors
former National Statistics Office (NSO)
Census Steering Committee
Government of Philippines
A modular approach was envisaged for the CAF 2012. A core module was carried out on a complete enumeration basis to provide key structural data and the frame for the supplementary modules. Along with the core census module, a community-based module was also administered in all barangays. The CAF 2012 was supposed to conduct sample-based supplementary modules, which would collect more in-depth structural data on irrigation, cropping pattern, aquaculture and fisheries. However, because the former four statistical agencies transitioned into the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), these were not carried out. The census listing covered all households, to identify those with holdings operated by agricultural operators or by aquaculture and fishing operators. All establishments with agriculture, aquaculture and fisheries as their main kind of business or industry were also covered in the CAF 2012. These were the same establishments covered in the CPBI 2012.
Dates of Data Collection
Data Collection Mode
Data Collection Notes
Two methods were used for data collection: (i) face-to-face interviews using paper questionnaires (the PAPI method), for data collection from all households for the core and community modules; and (ii) a self- administered paper questionnaire was used for establishments.
Five household-based questionnaires (forms),four establishment-based questionnaires.' and one a community module questionnaire (form 6) were designed and used for the CAF 2012.
The following forms were designed and used for the CAF 2012:
1. Form 1 - for listing the households;
2. Form 2 - Household Roster (the CAF 2012 Form 2 questionnaire was designed to record the sociodemographic characteristics of all members of agriculture, aquaculture and fishing operators' households identified during the listing);
3. Form 3 - Module for Agriculture;
4. Form 4 - Module for Aquaculture;
5. Form 5 - Module for Fishing.
6. Form 24 - Agriculture Establishment (Growing of Crops);
- Form 25 - Agriculture Establishment (Livestock and Poultry Raising);
- Form 26 - Aquaculture Establishment;
- Form 27 - Fishing Establishment.
The CAF questionnaires covered 15 of the core items recommended in the WCA 2010. The core item that was not covered is: "Other economic production activities of the holding's enterprise".
The Scan Stations and Data Entry Stations served as the processing centres for CAF 2012 machine processing. The activities performed in Scan Stations included receipt of questionnaires after manual processing, scanning of forms and maps, and interpretation of Optical Mark Recognition (OMR) data items. Anonymization was applied to the database. Four pre-tests were carried out to examine the feasibility and cost-effectiveness of new and alternative field operations, enumeration procedures and questionnaire content. A pilot census was conducted, providing the opportunity to test all aspects of the census operation in advance of the main census activities. This ensured the smooth operation and success of the census.
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Philippine Statistics Authority
Office of the National Statistician
Telephone: (+632) 9385267
Agriculture and Fisheries Census Division
Telephone: (+632) 3761834
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