Ag Data Act

Task Force members support new laws included in the 2018 Farm Bill that conserve natural resources and improve farmer success while protecting data privacy. Those laws call for a Congressionally mandated report requiring the Secretary to identify available USDA data on conservation practices and the effects of those practices on crop yields, farm and ranch profitability, and soil health. In addition, the report directs USDA to summarize the data and steps the Secretary will have to take to provide secure data access to university researchers.

These laws were directly informed by the Task Force’s consensus recommendations on agriculture data. They also mirror the Agriculture Data Act of 2018, introduced in March 2018 by Senators John Thune (R-SD) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), both members of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry. The Ag Data Act aims to strengthen USDA management of producer data so that it can be used to study the impacts of farm conservation practices on risk, yields, and profitability, while protecting producer privacy and anonymity. To learn more about the Agriculture Data Act, please read this FAQ.

We believe that improved agricultural data analysis will help farmers improve their profitability and reduce risk on working lands. We continue to work closely with USDA to ensure that these laws can pave the way towards greater data integration and analysis that can help farmers make important land management decisions.

Learn more:

Webinars and Events:

(11/8/2018): Innovations in Ag Data Collection, Analysis, and Management
(09/27/2018): Harnessing (Big) Data for Small Farmers
(09/12/2018): Ag Data Privacy: Improving Profitability While Protecting Privacy


  • Digital Ads Published in Kansas, Texas, and Michigan
  • The Columbus Dispatch: Senate Farm Bill Promotes Best Practices, Results (07/23/18)
  • Morning Consult: Data Will Empower Smart Farming Practice (06/04/18)
  • Agri-Pulse: Ag Data Act Will Increase Public Trust and Support (05/16/18)
  • Kansas City Star: Data Produces Economic, Environmental Benefits for Farms (05/22/18)
  • High Plains Journal: Food and Agriculture Groups Endorse Legislation to Study the Impacts of Farm Practices (04/12/18)
  • AgWeb: Big Data Plan for USDA Conservation Programs (04/12/18)
  • Successful Farming: Coalition Urges Support of Agriculture Data Act of 2018 (04/12/18)
  • Agri-Pulse: Farm Bill Proposal Would Use USDA Data to Assess Farm Practices (03/06/18)
  • Feedstuffs: Ag Data Act Helps Farmers Secure Value From USDA Data (03/02/18)
  • Politico Morning Ag: Klobuchar, Thune Introduce Conservation Data Bill (03/02/18)
  • Tri-State Livestock News: Thune, Klobuchar Introduce Ag Data Act (03/08/18)
  • Farm Futures: Klobuchar, Thune Introduce Agriculture Data Act (03/12/18)
  • Environmental Defense Fund: The Farm Bill Can Make the Ag Data Revolution a Reality (3/12/18)
  • High Plains Journal: Legislation Introduced to Improve Research of Conservation Practices (3/7/18)

Press Releases and Letters:

(12/13/2018) Press Release: Farm Bill Conference Report Takes First Step to Harness Agriculture Data and Secures Conservation Wins

(11/13/2018): Press Release: Digital Ads Urge Congressional Leaders to Support Conservation Funding, Ag Data Act in the Farm Bill
(10/29/2018): Press Release: Letter Published in Science Urges Support for Unleashing the Power of Ag Data
(08/01/18): Letter: 23 Diverse Ag Interests Urge Farm Bill Conferees to Preserve Key Legislation
(07/12/18): Paper Release: USDA and Ag Data: Improving Productivity while Protecting Producer Privacy
(06/28/18) Press Release: AGree’s Conservation and Crop Insurance Task Force Applauds the U.S. Senate’s Passage of Strong Bipartisan Farm Bill
(06/20/18) Letter: Diverse Agriculture Groups Urge the Senate to Support Senate Agriculture Committee's Farm Bill, S. 3042
(06/11/18) Press Release: Senate Farm Bill Will Improve Data Management and Crop Insurance Guidelines to Expand Conservation

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