Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing

Program Description

two farmers picking

The Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing (AgFF) Program addresses work-related safety and health issues for three different industries, but as a sector they share some common characteristics and concerns. These industries provide food, fuel, and fiber for the United States and around the globe. Together, they form one of the most hazardous industrial sectors: AgFF workers experience the highest fatal occupational injury rate at 23.4 deaths per 100,000 full-time workers, compared to a rate of 3.5 deaths per 100,000 workers for all industries.1

NIOSH has accumulated several decades of sound scientific information about risks, hazards, and prevention in agriculture and fishing, and to a lesser extent in forestry. Translating that knowledge into effective prevention and protection strategies for the direct benefit of workers is our main priority in all three of these industries. NIOSH’s primary mechanism for research translation is conducting both broad and targeted outreach and communication activities and creating strong partnerships to develop, evaluate, and promote the most effective ways to turn best practices into business-as-usual. The AgFF Program encourages and supports research, outreach, prevention activities, and partnerships with and between industry, labor, trade associations, professional organizations, and academia.

Not all workers have the same risk of experiencing a work-related injury or health problem, even when they have the same job. Factors that place some workers at greater risk than others include social dynamics related to race, ethnicity, place of birth, age, class, and gender; economic trends such as the growth of the temporary workforce; and organizational factors such as business size. Workers in the agriculture, forestry, and fishing industries experience several of these factors. The AgFF Program aims to decrease occupational diseases, injuries, and fatalities among vulnerable AgFF workers who are at higher risk for occupational injury and illness.

Major NAICS industries in the NIOSH Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing Program

NAICS Table
NAICS NAICS Industry Title Industries within NAICS Group Number of Workers2
111 Crop production Oilseed and grain, vegetable and melon, and fruit and nut tree farming; greenhouse, nursery and floriculture production; other crop farming (tobacco, cotton, sugarcane, hay, sugar beet, peanut) 1,261,000
112 Animal production and aquaculture Cattle ranching and farming; hog and pig farming; poultry and egg production; sheep and goat farming; aquaculture; other animal production 762,000
113 Forestry and logging Timber tract operations; forest nurseries and gathering of forest products; logging 166,000
114 Fishing, hunting and trapping Fishing; hunting and trapping 61,000
115 Support activities for agriculture and forestry Support activities for crop production; support activities for animal production; support activities for forestry 174,000

The NIOSH Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing program also includes seafood processing done aboard vessels and ship manufacturing.

For more information about the Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing sector, please see the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) Web siteexternal icon


1BLS [2019]. Number and rate of fatal work injuries by industry sector, 2018. In: Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, 2019. Washington, DC: Bureau of Labor Statistics. https://www.bls.gov/charts/census-of-fatal-occupational-injuries/number-and-rate-of-fatal-work-injuries-by-industry.htm

2BLS [2020]. Table 18. Employed persons by detailed industry, sex, race, and Hispanic or Latino ethnicity, 2019. In: Current Population Survey, 2018. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, https://www.bls.gov/cps/cpsaat18.pdfpdf iconexternal icon

Page last reviewed: May 13, 2020