Fewer man-years in agriculture
Agriculture, forestry, hunting and fishing
lu, Sample survey of agriculture and forestry, agriculture, horticulture, forestry, farming, supplementary industries (for example camp sites, hunting and fishing rights, rental), labour input, maintenance, machines and tools, energy consumption, investmentsAgriculture , Agriculture, forestry, hunting and fishing
Labour input in agriculture. Supplementary industry besides traditional farming.

Sample survey of agriculture and forestry


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Key figures


million man-hours conducted in agriculture

Labour input in agriculture1
 20132016Change in per cent 2013-2016
1Preliminary figures for 2016.
Agricultural holdings, number43 72641 064-6.1
Labour input, 1000 man-hours88 14582 127-6.8
Average labour input per holding, man-hours/holding2 0162 000-0.8

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Table 1 
Labour input in agriculture, by category of manpower and county. 1 000 man-hours.

Labour input in agriculture, by category of manpower and county. 1 000 man-hours.
Labour input, totalExecuted by holders and spouses/cohabitantsExecuted by family membersExecuted by regular and not regularly employees1
1Comprises also self-emloyed/firms.
2015-201682 12754 4396 83820 850
Østfold3 6092 1322341 242
Akershus and Oslo3 1111 918280913
Hedmark6 6274 2545731 800
Oppland9 2456 1547762 314
Buskerud4 0212 1202481 653
Vestfold2 6261 4571331 035
Telemark1 7531 197129427
Vest-Agder1 7511 285133333
Rogaland10 7736 9569582 859
Hordaland5 6224 127559936
Sogn og Fjordane5 9604 2486321 080
Møre og Romsdal5 4233 7153991 309
Sør-Trøndelag5 8273 9994911 337
Nord-Trøndelag6 8994 5245441 831
Nordland5 0533 5994131 041
Troms - Romsa2 0901 557215318
Finnmark - Finnmárku74049259189

Table 2 
Labour input in agriculture, by sex, category of manpower and county. 1 000 man-hours.

Labour input in agriculture, by sex, category of manpower and county. 1 000 man-hours.
Labour input in agriculture and horticulture, totalExecuted by selfemployed persons/firmsMalesFemales
Labour input, totalExecuted by holders and spouses/cohabitantsExecuted by family membersExecuted by regular and not regularly employeesLabour input, totalExecuted by holders and spouses/cohabitantsExecuted by family membersExecuted by regular and not regularly employees
2015-201682 1277 39656 89741 3185 21610 36217 83413 1211 6213 091
Østfold3 6095192 3801 68019650470945338218
Akershus and Oslo3 1113921 9871 40121637073251664151
Hedmark6 6278494 4443 2394337721 3341 016139179
Oppland9 2457266 6404 7966351 2091 8791 358141380
Buskerud4 0213492 8261 65320197284646846332
Vestfold2 6262661 8411 16211256751829522202
Telemark1 7531601 240953971903522443277
Vest-Agder1 7511991 2189941091153342912419
Rogaland10 7738337 4065 1827281 4962 5341 774230530
Hordaland5 6223153 9123 0364034731 3951 091156148
Sogn og Fjordane5 9603744 1933 1744635561 3931 074169150
Møre og Romsdal5 4234543 8132 8372677101 156878133145
Sør-Trøndelag5 8275583 9202 9173686351 3491 082124144
Nord-Trøndelag6 8996584 9943 5554509901 24797094183
Nordland5 0534513 5642 7633044971 03883610993
Troms - Romsa2 0901511 3721 0951571205674625847
Finnmark - Finnmárku7406046234035882181522441

About the statistics

The statistics give information about labour input and investments in agriculture.


Definitions of the main concepts and variables

Agricultural holding: All agricultural area operated by the same holder belongs to the same holding regardless of whether it includes several land numbers, title numbers and lease numbers.

Holder(s): The person(s) who is responsible for farming it.

Agricultural area in use: Comprises all owned and rented agricultural area in use at the holding, including fields that lie fallow a year. Agricultural areas include cultivated and surface-cultivated land, and other fertilized pastures.

Supplementary industry: An activity that uses the land, buildings or machinery belonging to the holding.

Gross income: The sum of all incomes excluded value added tax, and not deducted any costs.

Standard classifications

County where the holding is located, size of holding expressed in decares of utilized agricultural area and type of farming of the holding.

Administrative information

Name and topic

Name: Sample survey of agriculture and forestry
Topic: Agriculture, forestry, hunting and fishing

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Responsible division

Division for Primary Industry Statistics

Regional level

Part of the country.

Frequency and timeliness


International reporting

Data are delivered to Eurostat by agreement.


Reviewed and edited microdata are stored.


Background and purpose

The purpose of the Survey of Agriculture is to obtain relevant data not found in administrative data systems, and to obtain data for units not covered by administrative systems.

The Survey of Agriculture is designed to form a picture of the agriculture industry in Norway (the number of holdings and properties) through various questions. The questions vary from year to year (labour, liabilities, investments, fixed assets, rental of agricultural land, farm buildings, extended forest survey etc.).

Users and applications

Data from the survey are used by professional organizations, the Budget Committee for Agriculture, the Ministry of Agriculture and Food, the Ministry of Environment, various research institutions such as the Norwegian Agricultural Economics Research Institute and the Division for Environmental Statistics at Statistics Norway.

Equal treatment of users

No external users have access to the statistics and analyses before they are published and accessible simultaneously for all users on ssb.no at 10 am. Prior to this, a minimum of three months' advance notice is given inthe Statistics Release Calendar. This is one of Statistics Norway’s key principles for ensuring that all users are treated equally.

Coherence with other statistics

Not relevant

Legal authority

Statistics Act Section 2-1, 2-2, 2-3

EEA reference

Not relevant



The population is active holdings registered in the administrative Farm Register of the Norwegian Agricultural Authority, and covers all units that meet one or more conditions relating to minimum operating standards. An example of such conditions is that a holding must have at least 5 decares of agricultural area in use.

Data sources and sampling

The majority of the data comes directly from respondents who fill out forms for the annual agricultural survey. The Agricultural Register provides information on the size of the agricultural and forest area, persons associated with the property/holding and what their association is with the property/holding.

Each year a sample is drawn from the Farm Register for the Survey of Agriculture. The size of the sample varies between 10 000 and 12 000 active holdings, stratified by the size of estimated standard output  and type of production in each county. Until 2011 the size of the agricultural area was used in stead of standard output.

Collection of data, editing and estimations

Letters are sent to the holdings drawn for inclusion in the survey. The owner or holder of the property provides the data.

A number of controls and corrections are done to ensure consistency both on a single form and between forms and available register information.

The sample is stratified by location, standard output and farm type.

Seasonal adjustment

Not relevant


Figures based on few units (holdings) are not published if this causes risk for identifying any of the units concerned, or the results are considered to be all too uncertain for giving estimates.

Comparability over time and space

The statistics are basically comparable back to the end of 1940th. However, for some variables there will be a break e.g. between 1998 and 1999. The reason for this is that the method used for estimating the number of holdings from 1990 to 1998 gradually led to too high figures. This was evidently shown by the results of the complete census of agriculture for 1999.

In 2007, the question related to supplementary industries was expanded. In addition to ticking off for relevant industry, the respondents were asked to fill in the corresponding gross income. This modification may have caused a somewhat higher item non-response.

Accuracy and reliability

Sources of error and uncertainty

Primary data are obtained from the forms filled out by the respondents. They may contain errors made by the individual respondents when he or she filled out the form. A number of errors are discovered and corrected by those who go through forms during the revision process at Statistics Norway.

A number of errors during the collection and processing of the data are unavoidable and include errors that occur during revision, data processing errors etc. Extensive work has been carried out to reduce these errors as much as possible.

Non-response in the survey is due to the failure of individual respondents to deliver questionnaires or that a property has been sold or is no longer farmed as an independent unit.

Variance: All sample surveys will be encumbered by a certain amount of uncertainty. Generally, the fewer the observations are, the more uncertain the results. Groups based on few observations will be particularly sensitive to extreme values, i.e. values that deviate considerably from the average. Such extreme values are consequently assigned a weight equal to 1, so that they only represent themselves in the material.

Bias: All types of holdings are included in the Survey of Agriculture sample. To provide a better representation in certain counties with few holdings a higher percentage of holdings are selected in these areas.

Frame errors: The quality of the register basis from which the sample is selected also has an impact on the quality of the final result.


Not relevant