Farm structure (ef)

National Reference Metadata in ESS Standard for Quality Reports Structure (ESQRS)

Compiling agency: FPS Economy SMEs, Self-Employed and Energy - Statbel (Directorate-general Statistics - Statistics Belgium)

Time Dimension: 2016-A0

Data Provider: BE7

Data Flow: FSS_ESQRS_A


Eurostat metadata
Reference metadata
1. Contact
2. Statistical presentation
3. Statistical processing
4. Quality management
5. Relevance
6. Accuracy and reliability
7. Timeliness and punctuality
8. Coherence and comparability
9. Accessibility and clarity
10. Cost and Burden
11. Confidentiality
12. Comment
Related Metadata
Annexes (including footnotes)
 



For any question on data and metadata, please contact: EUROPEAN STATISTICAL DATA SUPPORT

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1. Contact Top
1.1. Contact organisation

FPS Economy SMEs, Self-Employed and Energy - Statbel (Directorate-general Statistics - Statistics Belgium)

1.2. Contact organisation unit

Thematic Directorate Economie

1.5. Contact mail address

Boulevard du Roi Albert II, 16, North Gate III , 

1000 Bruxelles, Belgium


2. Statistical presentation Top
2.1. Data description
1. Brief history of the national survey 

Until 2007 (for 35 years) the Statistics Belgium have been organizing annually an agricultural census to comply with different European obligations, among which the regulation on the farm structure surveys. Although the farm structure surveys don’t have to be carried out each year, Belgium has decided to hold one annual survey by all agricultural holdings rather than to do different purposive surveys.

In 2008 Belgium decided to replace the census by a sample survey of 75% in order to reduce the burden for farmers. Only in 2010 all Member States were obliged to carry out a census.

Since 2011 the Statistics Belgium has begun to use administrative crop data to reduce the burden for the farmers even  more.

So the farm structure survey of 2013 was a sample survey that was filled out by 75% of the farmers and where all the characteristics on land were replaced by administrative data.

The farm structure survey of 2016 has been carried out as a census  in October 2016 instead of May in the past. As in 2013 characteristics on land were administrative data. Characteristics on cattle and pigs where replaced by administrative data complemented with survey characteristics.

 

2. Legal framework of the national survey 
- the national legal framework

The legal basis of the agricultural survey was laid down in the Royal decree of September 1, 2012 relating to the organisation of an annual agricultural survey in May. This Royal decree was based on the law of July 4, 1962 concerning public statistics, modified by the law of August 1, 1985 and (modified by the law of) March 22, 2006. 

- the obligations of the respondents with respect to the survey

The participation in the survey is obligatory.

Persons who waive  making a declaration or who don’t give the precise and complete information are punishable by a fine, as set down in the statistics law.

- the identification, protection and obligations of survey enumerators

Survey carried out without enumerators (by post and on-line survey) 

2.2. Classification system

[Not requested]

2.3. Coverage - sector

[Not requested]

2.4. Statistical concepts and definitions
List of abbreviations

- FPS: Federal Public Service.

- SMEs: Small and Medium Sized enterprises.

- FEAGA: Le Fond européen agricole de garantie.

- FEADER: Le Fond européen agricole pour le développement rural.

2.5. Statistical unit
The national definition of the agricultural holding

National definition of a holding: each holding producing farm products or horticultural products for sale as principle or secondary activity, or each holding maintaining its land which is no longer used for production purposes in good agricultural and environmental condition. Nature reserves without agriculture activity are excluded. These holdings are only maintaining the landscape (heather, forest,  …).

The agricultural holding in 2016 is a single unit, both technically and economically  and with a single management, except for a few cases which occurred because a few farmers are doing one declaration for several single units.

2.6. Statistical population
1. The number of holdings forming the entire universe of agricultural holdings in the country
37 501

 

2. The national survey coverage: the thresholds applied in the national survey and the geographical coverage

The IACS register in Belgium is very large and contains also holdings that do not produce for sale. It contains also horse-riding centres, horse stud farms, livestock dealers, etc. We filter them out. If it is not clear that they produce for sale we contact the holdings for clarification.

The thresholds in the holding register are lower than those specified in the Regulation 1166/2008:

- At least 2 ha of arable land or 50 ares of land under greenhouse;

- Production of animal manure equivalent (at least) of 300 kg P2O5;

The criteria of 2 ha of arable land or 0.5 ha land under greenhouses are criteria for the holdings which do not apply for subsidies. As soon as a holding applies for 1 subsidy (see all the legal bases in concept 3.1 Source data - item 4.1 Name, time reference and updating) they are represented in the holding register (whatever their area is). So, very small farmers under the Eurostat thresholds are included if they applied for subsidies. 

 

3. The number of holdings in the national survey coverage 
36 888

 

4. The survey coverage of the records sent to Eurostat

The same coverage as mentioned above in concept 2.6 Statistical population - item 2.

 

5. The number of holdings in the population covered by the records transferred to Eurostat
36 888

 

6. Holdings with standard output equal to zero included in the records sent to Eurostat

 41 holdings have a SO equal to zero:

  • 18 holdings were holdings without poultry in 2016 but are still active.
  • 1 holding without pigs in 2016 but is still active.
  • 1 holding that did only contractual agricultural work in 2016. This holding declared 22ha cereals and potatoes in 2015. This holding is still active.
  • 1 holding with production of renewable energy and that forces roots of chicory.
  • 1 holding with 10 ha wooded area (rural development support: afforestation and creation of woodland).
  • 9 holdings declared fallow land that is kept in good agricultural environmental conditions.
  • 10 holdings with only pullets. The pullets are not economically valued.

 

7. Proofs that the requirements stipulated in art. 3.2 the Regulation 1166/2008 are met in the data transmitted to Eurostat
Given that the thresholds only concern holdings that do not apply for subsidies, BE does not have to comply with art 3.2 of the regulation.

 

8. Proofs that the requirements stipulated in art. 3.3 the Regulation 1166/2008 are met in the data transmitted to Eurostat

The thresholds in the IACS register are lower than the thresholds for the farm structure surveys.

- At least 2 ha of arable land or 50 ares of land under greenhouse;

- Production of animal manure equivalent (at least) of 300 kg P2O5;

 

The calculation of the number of animals producing 300 kg phosphate in a year depends on the composition of the livestock:

- For cattle the average is 30 kg P2O5/animal /year. So it means 10 bovines;

- For pigs the average is about 10 kg P2O5/animal /year which corresponds to 30 animals. This is lower than the 50 pigs in the regulation.

- For poultry the average is about 0.5 kg P2O5/animal /year. This corresponds to 600 animals (lower than the 1000 animals in the regulation).

 

These are criteria for the holdings which do not apply for subsidies. As soon as a holding applies for 1 subsidy (see all the legal bases in concept 3.1 Source data - item 4.1 Name, time reference and updating) it is represented in the holding register (whatever their areas are). So, very small farmers under the Eurostat thresholds are included if they apply for subsidies.

2.7. Reference area
Location of the holding. The criteria used to determine the NUTS3 region of the holding

The administrative building (this is mostly also the residence of the farmer) 

2.8. Coverage - Time

Same reference dates as in Regulation 1166/2008:

- during March and April, the farmers declare their main crops to IACS. If the crop is not sown at the moment of the declaration, they must give the area of crops that will be sown. Second crops are not taken into account for FSS. The reference period for land characteristics is March for Wallonia and April for Flanders;

- the reference day for livestock characteristics is 15th of October;

- the reference period for labour force characteristics is from 1st October 2015 until 30th September 2016;

- the reference period for rural development measures is 2014 to 2016;

- the reference period for manure is from 1st October 2015 until 30th September 2016.

2.9. Base period

[Not requested]


3. Statistical processing Top
1.Survey process and timetable

1. Definition of the survey objective and requirements:

- October 2015 – March 2016 : workgroup on the survey characteristics (analyse and content of the survey forms)

- October 2016 : workgroup on the dissemination of the results

2. Survey design:

- October 2015: Set-up organization:

- March 2016  –  end July 2016: drawing-up questionnaires (in Dutch, French and German)

- March 2016 – September 2016: design of data processing (input programs and data entry)

- February 2016 – June 2016 : drawing-up and updating farm register

- June 2016 – August  2016: configuration of the follow-up tool

 3. Data collection:

- August 2016  - September 2016: upload population in the follow-up tool

- October 2016: sending of the forms

- October 2016 – April 2017: reception of the completed forms

- November 2016 – April 2017 : sending letters of reminder and telephonic reminders

 4. Data processing and validation:

- November  2016 – April 2017: data entry

- February 2017 – July 2017: data validation and correction

5. Data compilation:

- February 2017 – May 2017: Integration of final administrative data (area, cattle and pigs)

- February 2017 – July 2017: analyses and calculation of the results – first part (area and animals)

- February 2017 – August 2017: calculation of the results and analysis – second part (other characteristics)

- June 2017 – December 2017 : Imputations for non-respondents

6. Dissemination:

- August 2017: national dissemination of the results on several geographical levels (first part: area and animals)

- December 2017: sending a first version of microdata to Eurostat

- April 2018: national dissemination second part of the results (other characteristics)

 

2. The bodies involved and the share of responsibilities among bodies

Thematic Directorate Territory / Thematic Directorate Economie

Data Collection Enterprises

Directorate Methodology

 

3. Serious deviations from the established timetable (if any)
No deviations.
3.1. Source data
1. Source of data

The list of farm holdings and cultivated areas are provided by regional administrations responsible for the IACS.

Data for cattle and pigs are administrative data from SANITEL (registration system of animals) combined with the  survey.

The rural development measures are taken from a register by regional administrations.

For the other characteristics Belgium had conducted a census. 

 

2. (Sampling) frame

The list of farm holdings and cultivated areas are provided by regional administrations responsible for the IACS and SANITEL from the Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain.

 

3. Sampling design
3.1 The sampling design

Not applicable. 

3.2 The stratification variables

Not applicable. 

3.3 The full coverage strata

Not applicable. 

3.4 The method for the determination of the overall sample size

Not applicable. 

3.5 The method for the allocation of the overall sample size
Not applicable. 
3.6 Sampling across time

Not applicable. 

3.7 The software tool used in the sample selection

Not applicable. 

3.8 Other relevant information, if any

Not applicable. 

 

4. Use of administrative data sources
4.1 Name, time reference and updating

AREA:

The legal basis refers to IACS and the Rural Development Measures . The characteristics for the Rural Development Measures are not included in the IACS register.

Time reference is March 2016 for the Walloon declarations and April 2016 for the Flemish declarations. Updating by the farmers is allowed until October.

Regional Decrees and Governmental Decisions in application of the European regulation concerning the area declarations.

 Flemish Region :

  • Het decreet van 22 december 2006 houdende inrichting van een gemeenschappelijke identificatie van landbouwers, exploitaties en landbouwgrond in het kader van het meststoffenbeleid en van het landbouwbeleid, en zijn uitvoeringsbepalingen.
  • Het decreet van 22 december 2006 houdende de bescherming van water tegen de verontreiniging door nitraten uit agrarische bronnen, en zijn uitvoeringsbesluiten.
  • Het besluit van de Vlaamse Regering van 8 juli 2005 tot instelling van een bedrijfstoeslagregeling en bepaalde gebonden steunregelingen voor landbouwers en tot toepassing van de randvoorwaarden.
  • Het besluit van de Vlaamse Regering van 9 februari 2007 houdende bepalingen tot inrichting van een gemeenschappelijke identificatie van landbouwers, exploitaties en landbouwgrond in het kader van het meststoffenbeleid en van het landbouwbeleid.
  • Ministerieel besluit van 13 augustus 2009 betreffende de vaststelling van de modaliteiten tot instelling van een bedrijfstoeslagregeling en tot vaststelling van bepaalde steunregelingen voor landbouwers en tot toepassing van de randvoorwaarden.
  • Ministerieel besluit van 19 augustus 2009 tot instelling van een bedrijfstoeslagregeling en tot vaststelling van bepaalde steunregelingen voor landbouwers en tot toepassing van de randvoorwaarden voor wat betreft de uitvoering van de gedeelde bevoegdheden met het oog op de inrichting van een gemeenschappelijke identificatie van landbouwers, exploitaties en landbouwgrond in het kader van het meststoffenbeleid en van het landbouwbeleid.
  • Het besluit van de Vlaamse Regering van 21 december 2007 tot het verlenen van subsidies voor de uitvoering van agromilieumaatregelen met toepassing van het Vlaams Programma voor Plattelandsontwikkeling (PDPO).
  • Het besluit van de Vlaamse Regering van 5 september 2014 tot het verlenen van subsidies voor de uitvoering van agromilieu- en klimaatmaatregelen met toepassing van het Vlaams Programma voor Plattelandsontwikkeling voor de periode 2014- 2020.
  • Het besluit van de Vlaamse Regering van 4 juli 2014 tot het verlenen van hectaresteun voor de biologische productiemethode met toepassing van het Vlaamse Programma voor Plattelandsontwikkeling voor de periode 2014-2020.
  • Het besluit van de Vlaamse Regering van 6 juni 2008 betreffende het sluiten van beheerovereenkomsten en het toekennen van vergoedingen ter uitvoering van Verordening (EG) nr. 1698/2005 van de Raad van 20 september 2005 inzake steun voor plattelandsontwikkeling.
  • Het ministerieel besluit van 11 juni 2008 betreffende het sluiten van beheerovereenkomsten en het toekennen van vergoedingen ter uitvoering van Verordening (EG) nr. 1698/2005 van de Raad van 20 september 2005 inzake steun voor plattelandsontwikkeling.
  • Het besluit van de Vlaamse Regering van 19 september 2014 tot het verlenen van subsidies voor beheerovereenkomsten met toepassing van Verordening (EU) nr. 1305/2013 van het Europees Parlement en de Raad van 17 december 2013 inzake steun voor plattelandsontwikkeling uit het Europees Landbouwfonds voor plattelandsontwikkeling.

 

Walloon Region:

  • L’introduction du formulaire de ‘déclaration de superficie et demande d’aides 2016’ est réalisée en toute connaissance de la réglementation européenne et wallonne en vigueur, dont notamment, les prescriptions contenues dans les Règlements (CE) n° 73/2009, 1698/2005, ainsi que leurs règlements d’application (notamment les Règlements (CE) n° 1974/2006, 1975/2006, 380/200 9, 484/2009, 1120/2009 et 1122/2009) et 65/2011.
  • L’introduction d’une déclaration de superficie ne donne pas nécessairement droit aux aides sollicitées.
  • En application du Règlement européen (CE) n°259/2008 de la Commission européenne du 18 mars 2008,chaque état membre est tenu de publier un certain nombre d’informations relatives aux bénéficiaires des aides de la politique agricole commune (PAC), qu’elles relèvent du FEAGA et du FEADER, à l’exception des personnes physiques (arrêt de la Cour de Justice de l’Union Européenne du 9 novembre 2011).
 

CATTLE AND PIGS:

SANITEL is the Belgium computerised management system for the identification, registration and supervision of animals (cattle, pigs, sheep, goats, deer, poultry).

Regulation (EC) No 1760/2000 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 July 2000 establishing a system for the identification and registration of bovine animals. 

4.2 Organisational setting on the use of administrative sources

The Statistics Belgium has received the written agreement for the access to administrative data for areas on July 2011 for Flanders. The access to administrative data for areas from Wallonia are based to date on a gentlemen’s agreement.

There is a written agreement (February 2011) with the Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain for the exchange of data.

Only Flanders asks for our opinion when changes are made in the characteristics or definitions of their registers (holding register or IACS).

4.3 The purpose of the use of administrative sources - link to the file
Please access the information in the file at the link: (link available as soon as possible)

 

4.4 Quality assessment of the administrative sources
  Method  Shortcoming detected Measure taken
- coherence of the reporting unit (holding)

IACS

IACS is used as population.

 

IACS

In IACS, there are a few farmers who are doing one declaration for several single units. This means that the data recorded in a single record (agricultural holding) covers more than one agricultural holding. (But the reverse also happens.) The problem occurs for only a few cases.

IACS

It is impossible to convert the data because in the administrative data on area we cannot see which parcel belongs to which single unit.

- coherence of definitions of characteristics Not available. Not available. Not available.
- coverage:      
 over-coverage IACS register (holdings) The source covers studs, cattle dealers, private persons which have a few horses for horse riding or have a few animals for their own consumption.   These categories have been left out from the farm register. 
 under-coverage IACS register (holdings)

Statbel waits 2 years before including new holdings. So, the new holdings from 2014 were included but not those from 2015. This is because there are new holdings that are doing only once a declaration to IACS and then become sleeping holdings.

To avoid this phenomenon Statbel waits to have two successive declarations.  
 misclassification Not available. Not available. Not available.
 multiple listings IACS register (holdings and area) 2 separate regional registers have to be put together to obtain a national register. Farmers do their area declaration in the region where the parcels are located. There are farmers having parcels in Flanders and Wallonia. They have to declare the respective parcels in both regions.  

Double counting of the holdings is avoided when the two registers are merged together to one national register.

- missing data IACS (area) There are missing data concerning horticultural crops for the Walloon holdings.  Administrative source is completed with an exhaustive survey for horticultural crops in Wallonia. In 2016, this survey was integrated in the census.
- errors in data Not available. Not available. Not available.
- processing errors Not available. Not available. Not available.
- comparability Before suppressing a survey, comparative analyses had been undertaken between administrative sources and data from surveys.  No significant differences were observed for the last two years.

Not relevant.

- other (if any) Not available. Not available. Not available.

 

4.5 Management of metadata

All metadata are systematically stored as SAS-files in the data warehouse and maintained over time.

4.6 Reporting units and matching procedures

In Flanders Region, the definition of the reporting unit is based on the management autonomy for the agricultural activities and means of production. One “exploitatie” (agricultural holding) may have many “exploitants” (farmers). An agricultural holding has to be entered into the register if one or several of the following conditions is met :

-  At least 2 ha of arable land or 50 ares of land under greenhouse;

-  Production of animal manure equivalent (at least) of 300 kg P2O5;

-  In case of activation of a payment entitlement per eligible hectare;

-  The holding has milk quotas or suckler cow quotas;

-  The holding get grant from the Vlaams Landbouwinvesteringsfonds (Agricultural Investment Found);

-  The holding receives slaughtering premiums for calves.

In Walloon Region, the register includes all the farmers who submits a premium application (and thus are identified in the IACS) and/or who have to comply with the Nitrate Directive (2000/L0060). 

4.7 Difficulties using additional administrative sources not currently used
None.
3.2. Frequency of data collection
Frequency of data collection

Every three years.

3.3. Data collection
1. Data collection modes

Websurvey + self-completed paper questionnaires 

 

2. Data entry modes

Entering the data online by the holder + data entering by FPS Economy SMEs, Self-Employed and Energy - Statistics Belgium 

 

3. Measures taken to increase response rates

Call-back strategies, written / telephone reminders, contacting respondents who have only partly completed the questionnaires 

 

4. Monitoring of response and non-response
1

Number of holdings in the survey frame plus possible (new) holdings added afterwards

In case of a census 1=3+4+5

37 501(total population in the farm register) 
2

Number of holdings in the gross sample plus possible (new) holdings added to the sample

Only for sample survey, in which case 2=3+4+5

Not applicable. 
3 Number of ineligible holdings

613

3.1

Number of ineligible holdings with ceased activities

This item is a subset of 3.

613
4

Number of holdings with unknown eligibility status

4>4.1+4.2

4.1 Number of holdings with unknown eligibility status – re-weighted
4.2 Number of holdings with unknown eligibility status – imputed
5

Number of eligible holdings

5=5.1+5.2

36 888
5.1

Number of eligible non-responding holdings

5.1>=5.1.1+5.1.2

4 288
5.1.1 Number of eligible non-responding holdings – re-weighted 0
5.1.2 Number of eligible non-responding holdings – imputed 4 288
5.2 Number of eligible responding holdings

32 600

6

Number of the records in the dataset 

6=5.2+5.1.2+4.2

36 888

 

5. Questionnaire(s) - in annex
See the annex.


Annexes:
3.3-5. Questionnaire in French
3.4. Data validation
Data validation
Edit rules/checks

Completeness checks, routing, consistency, relational checks

 

Tools used for data validation

Blaise and SAS

 

Level of data validation 

- When completing the questionnaire online by the farmer ;

- Data entry by the local collection centers;

- Additional validation while analyzing the data.

3.5. Data compilation
Methodology for determination of weights (extrapolation factors)
1. Design weights

 Not applicable. 

2. Adjustment of weights for non-response

 Not applicable. 

3. Adjustment of weights to external data sources

 Not applicable. 

4. Any other applied adjustment of weights

 Not applicable. 

3.6. Adjustment

[Not requested]


4. Quality management Top
4.1. Quality assurance

[Not requested]

4.2. Quality management - assessment

[Not requested]


5. Relevance Top

-

5.1. Relevance - User Needs
Main groups of characteristics surveyed only for national purposes 

Characteristics surveyed only for national purposes:

- The presence of an eventually successor for the farmholder

- Short food supply scheme

- Ware potatoes

The users of those characteristics are: the regional administrations of agriculture and environmental, the national Bank of Belgium, professional organizations, research centers, universities.

- More detailed information about livestock was surveyed to comply with the Regulation (EC) No 1165/2008 of 19 November 2008 concerning livestock and meat statistics and repealing Council Directives 93/23/EEC, 93/24/EEC and 93/25/EEC. 

- Information about milk processing at farmlevel was surveyed to comply with the milk statistics.

5.2. Relevance - User Satisfaction

[Not requested]

5.3. Completeness
Non-existent (NE) and non-significant (NS) characteristics - link to the file. Characteristics possibly not collected for other reasons

Please access the information in the file at the following link: (link available as soon as possible)

5.3.1. Data completeness - rate

[Not requested]


6. Accuracy and reliability Top

-

6.1. Accuracy - overall
Main sources of error

Not applicable. 

6.2. Sampling error
Method used for estimation of relative standard errors (RSEs)

Not applicable. 

6.2.1. Sampling error - indicators

1. Relative standard errors (RSEs) - in annex

  

2. Reasons for possible cases where precision requirements are applicable and estimated RSEs are above the thresholds

Not applicable. 

6.3. Non-sampling error

-

6.3.1. Coverage error
1. Under-coverage errors

Statbel waits 2 years before including new holdings. So, the new holdings from 2014 were included but not those from 2015. This is because there are new holdings that are doing only once a declaration to IACS and then become sleeping holdings. To avoid this phenomenon, Statbel waits to have two successive declarations.

  

2. Over-coverage errors

The source covers studs, cattle dealers, private persons which have a few horses for horse riding or have a few animals for their own consumption. 
These categories have been left out from the farm register.

2.1 Multiple listings 

Not available. 

 

3. Misclassification errors

There was no misclassification. 

 

4. Contact errors

They were considered as non response.

 

5. Other relevant information, if any

Not available. 

6.3.1.1. Over-coverage - rate
Over-coverage - rate

1.6%.

The over-coverage rate is calculated by dividing the number of ineligible units  to the number of units in the sampling frame. However the register contains only the farm holdings that are supposed to be active at the moment of the survey. The register was established in February. Meanwhile some holdings stopped their activities between the compilation of the register and the survey in October.

 

6.3.1.2. Common units - proportion

[Not requested]

6.3.2. Measurement error
Characteristics that caused high measurement errors

When the values were too high or when there was an incoherency in the data we contacted the farmer and asked to correct their data. High values were detected by using thresholds. There is no specific list of characteristics. It can occur to every numeric characteristic.

Some high values were found in the agricultural activities on the farm of the family and non-family labour force (E_1_3 and E_1_4).  Instead of giving the number of persons working on the farm, numbers of hours were given. This was mainly due to the changing of questioning compared to the past.

Some wrong values were given in the section ‘Manure’ (M_6_5, M_6_6 and M_6_7). In the questionnaire there was asked to give % and farmers gave ha. This was due to the complexity of the characteristics.

6.3.3. Non response error
1. Unit non-response: reasons, analysis and treatment

The non-response rate was 11,6% in 2016. The non-response rate has increased in 2016 because the survey was conducted as a census with a huge burden for the farmer.

No non-response analysis was made. 

Unit non-response was covered by imputation.

 

2. Item non-response: characteristics, reasons and treatment

Forms that were  not properly or completed filled in and where it was not possible to contact the farmer were considered  as a non-responding unit or partially non-responding item. For those characteristics or holdings imputations have been done.

6.3.3.1. Unit non-response - rate
Unit non-response - rate

The non-response rate was 11,6% in 2016. 

6.3.3.2. Item non-response - rate
Item non-response - rate

Not available. 

6.3.4. Processing error
1. Imputation methods

The imputation method depends on the groups of variables to be imputed. The methods used are the closest neighbor, linear regression, logistic regression with random imputation according to the probabilities obtained.

 

2. Other sources of processing errors

There is no available assessment of processing errors affecting individual observations.

Wrong data were corrected immediately after contacting the farmer.

 

3. Tools used and people/organisations authorised to make corrections
The service Data Collection Enterprises. 
6.3.4.1. Imputation - rate
Imputation - rate
11.6% for unit non-response.
6.3.5. Model assumption error

[Not requested]

6.4. Seasonal adjustment

[Not requested]

6.5. Data revision - policy
Data revision - policy

Belgium publishes only a revision for their statistics when errors are discovered after data have been placed in the public domain.

The FSS dataset in Belgium is not placed in the public domain, so there is no revision.

6.6. Data revision - practice
Data revision - practice

There was no revision for the FSS. 

6.6.1. Data revision - average size

[Not requested]


7. Timeliness and punctuality Top

-

7.1. Timeliness

-

7.1.1. Time lag - first result
Time lag - first result

4 months (only area and livestock) after the end of the reference year 2016

7.1.2. Time lag - final result
Time lag - final result
7 months (all characteristics) after the end of the reference year 2016
7.2. Punctuality

-

7.2.1. Punctuality - delivery and publication
Punctuality - delivery and publication
120 days


8. Coherence and comparability Top

-

8.1. Comparability - geographical
1. National vs. EU definition of the agricultural holding
The agricultural activities are the same as the ones from Annex I of the Regulation 1166/2008; the nature reserves without agricultural activities are not included because these holdings are only maintaining the landscape (heather, forest,…).

The majority of the holdings in the farm structure survey are single units. In IACS which is used as population, there are a few farmers who are doing one declaration for several single units. This means that the data recorded in a single record (agricultural holding) covers more than one agricultural holding. (But the reverse also happens.) The problem occurs for only a few cases. It’s impossible to convert the data because in the administrative data on area we cannot see which parcel belongs to which single unit.

 

2.National survey coverage vs. coverage of the records sent to Eurostat

There is no difference between the population covered in the national survey and the population covered by the records sent to Eurostat.

 

3. National vs. EU characteristics

Following handbook is used for the definitions: Handbook on implementing the FSS and SAPM definitions – REV 10.

There is no difference between the national and EU definitions of characteristics.

Number of hours per year for a full-time:1800 hours  (225 days of 8 hours). But this is only used to calculate the AWU of non-family members non-regularly employed.

For the calculation of the AWU of the persons that are regularly employed following coefficients are used:

- The farm work on the holding is 0%: coefficient=0

- The farm work on the holding is >0% - <25%: coefficient=0,125

- The farm work on the holding is 25% - <50%: coefficient=0,375

- The farm work on the holding is 50% - <75%: coefficient=0,625

- The farm work on the holding is 75% - <100%: coefficient=0,875

- The farm work on the holding is 100%: coefficient=1

 

4. Common land
4.1 Current methodology for collecting information on the common land

Common land does not exist in Belgium

4.2 Possible problems encountered in relation to the collection of information on common land and possible solutions for future FSS surveys

Not applicable. 

4.3 Total area of common land in the reference year

Not applicable. 

4.4 Number of agricultural holdings making use of the common land or Number of (especially created) common land holdings in the reference year

Not applicable. 

 

5. Differences across regions within the country

 Not applicable

 

6. Organic farming. Possible differences between national standards and rules for certification of organic products and the ones set out in Council Regulation No.834/2007

There are no differences 

8.1.1. Asymmetry for mirror flow statistics - coefficient

[Not requested]

8.2. Comparability - over time

1. Possible changes of the definition of the agricultural holding

There were no changes of definition.

 

2. Possible changes in the coverage of holdings for which records are sent to Eurostat

There were no changes in coverage.

 

3. Changes of definitions and/or reference time and/or measurements of characteristics

The data on organic crops (areas) were provided from administrative sources. These sources fit with the IACS.

The data on cattle and pigs were provided from administrative sources (SANITEL).

The reference day for livestock characteristics changed from 15 May to 15 October.

The reference period for labour force characteristics changed from 1 May - 30 April to 1 October - 30 September.

 

4. Changes over time in the results as compared to previous FSS, which may be attributed to sampling variability

Because of the very high sampling rate in 2013 (75%) and a census in 2016, no change could be attributed to sampling variability. 

 

5. Common land
5.1 Possible changes in the decision or in the methodology to collect common land

Not applicable. 

5.2 Change of the total area of common land and of the number of agricultural holdings making use of the common land / number of common land holdings

Not applicable. 

 

6. Major trends on the main characteristics compared with the previous FSS survey
Main characteristic Current FSS survey Previous FSS survey Difference in % Comments
Number of holdings 36 888 37 761  -2.3%   

Due to the constant improvement of the farm register, the number of holdings decreased less than in the past. This results in a slight increase of the utilised agricultural area and arable land.

Utilised agricultural area (ha) 1 354 247 1 307 902 + 3.5%   

Due to the constant improvement of the farm register, the number of holdings decreased less than in the past. This results in a slight increase of the utilised agricultural area and arable land.

Arable land (ha) 855 410 799 806 +7.0%   

Due to the constant improvement of the farm register, the number of holdings decreased less than in the past. This results in a slight increase of the utilised agricultural area and arable land.

Cereals (ha) 337 015 332 481 +1.4%   
Industrial plants (ha) 33 721 30 653 +10%   
Plants harvested green (ha) 267 469 248 775 +7.5%   
Fallow land (ha) 9 167 8 198 +11.8%  Fallow land difference between 2013 and 2016 is above 10%, but this difference concerns a small area.
Permanent grassland (ha) 478 430 486 596 -1.7%   
Permanent crops (ha) 20 407 21 802 -6.4%   
Livestock units (LSU) 3 675 052 3 584 436 +2.5%   
Cattle (heads) 2 503 139 2 360 039 +6.1%  The reference day changed from 15 May to 15 October.
Sheep (heads) 86 229 117 321 -26.5% 

The reference day changed from 15 May to 15 October. In May 2013 the lambs were included.

 
Goats (heads) 50 801 38 591 +31.6%  The reference day changed from 15 May to 15 October.
Pigs (heads) 6 178 980 6 227 302 -0.8%   
Poultry (heads) 42 629 617 35 109 229 +21.4%  The reference day changed from 15 May to 15 October.
Family labour force (persons) 51 105 59 285 -13.8%   

Over the years the number of legal holdings increases and the number of individual holdings decreases. This phenomenon results in the decrease of family labor and increase of non-family labor. 

Family labour force (AWU) 34 917 40 217 -13.2% 
Non family labour force regularly employed (persons) 19 802 15 546 +27.4% 
Non family labour force regularly employed (AWU) 14 813 11 788 +25.7% 
8.2.1. Length of comparable time series

[Not requested]

8.3. Coherence - cross domain
1. Coherence at micro level with other data collections

In 2016 there was one data collection for all agricultural statistics.

 

2. Coherence at macro level with other data collections

In 2016 there was one data collection for all agricultural statistics.

8.4. Coherence - sub annual and annual statistics

[Not requested]

8.5. Coherence - National Accounts

[Not requested]

8.6. Coherence - internal

[Not requested]


9. Accessibility and clarity Top

-

9.1. Dissemination format - News release

[Not requested]

9.2. Dissemination format - Publications
1. The nature of publications
Diverse standard tables are available for free for all characteristics at different geographical levels. The users could ask for results from the survey that are not available in the standard tables as long as the confidentiality of the data has been respected.

The users can download these excel-tables from our website.

 

2. Date of issuing (actual or planned)

 April 2017: Crops and animals.

 May 2018 : Other characteristics (labour force; other gainful activities, type of tenure, organic farming)

 

3. References for on-line publications

The different standard tables are available on http://statbel.fgov.be

9.3. Dissemination format - online database
Dissemination format - online database

The standard excel-tables are available on our website: http://statbel.fgov.be

9.3.1. Data tables - consultations
Data tables - consultations

 Not available.

9.4. Dissemination format - microdata access
Dissemination format - microdata access

Micro-data are disseminated only with an official agreement of the Commission for the protection of Privacy. Requests for micro-data are therefore dealt on case by case basis. 

9.5. Dissemination format - other

[Not requested]

9.6. Documentation on methodology
1. Available documentation on methodology

There is no methodological documentation available. There is only a methodological note included in the standard tables. 

 

2. Main scientific references

Not available.

9.7. Quality management - documentation
Quality management - documentation

There is no documentation available on quality. 

9.7.1. Metadata completeness - rate

[Not requested]

9.7.2. Metadata - consultations

[Not requested]


10. Cost and Burden Top
Co-ordination with other surveys: burden on respondents

We use as far as possible administrative data. For 2016 : almost all the cultivated areas were provided by the IACS, cattle and pigs were provided by SANITEL (registration system of animals). 


11. Confidentiality Top

-

11.1. Confidentiality - policy
Confidentiality - policy

Strict confidentiality of all collected data is laid down by the Statistics law of July 4, 1962.

11.2. Confidentiality - data treatment
Confidentiality - data treatment

For tables with size classes, the classes with less than 3 holdings are regrouped. If it isn’t possible to regroup them we put ‘:’.

Results at municipal level: the results are not disseminated when there are less than 5 holdings in the municipality. We aggregate all these municipalities to one municipality called ‘confidential municipalities’.

For microdata: only anonymous microdata are transmitted.


12. Comment Top
1. Possible improvements in the future

The use of administrative data for labour force.

 

2. Other annexes

Not available. 


Related metadata Top


Annexes Top