Most city folks don’t know but March 13-19, week is Agriculture Week. It is a time to celebrate agriculture across our country. The 2016 theme is, “Agriculture: Stewards of a Healthy Planet.” Ag statistics show that farmers have used careful stewardship that has spurred a nearly 50 percent decline in erosion of cropland by wind and water since 1982.
- Farmers and ranchers make up less than two percent of the U.S. population. They are diverse growing conventional, biotech and organic crops.
- One U.S. farm feeds 168 people. There are 2.1 million farms and 36,000 in Washington state.
- Ninety-seven percent of farms and ranches are family owned. Just 3 percent of America’s farms and ranches are owned by non-family corporations.
- China is America’s top ag trade partner receiving $24.6 billion in U.S ag exports. Canada is a close second with $21.9 billion and Mexico, $19.4 billion.
- Ag programs equal 11 percent of the U.S. Department of Agriculture budget. Food Assistance and Nutrition programs make up 75 percent.
- Farmers receive only 16.7 percent of your food dollar. The rest of that dollar goes to marketing, processing, wholesaling, distributing and retailing.
- The U.S. continues to have the least expensive food in the world with consumers spending just 10 percent of their disposable income on food compared to 20 percent in Venezuela and 47 percent in Kenya.
- Whatcom county has 1,702 farms and ranches producing $357,312,000 in market value of products sold.
- Whatcom County is ranked 1st in the nation for production or raspberries and 29th in the nation for our production of milk.
Enjoy your lunch and thank a farmer!!!
Thanks to Rebecca Colnar of AgNewsWire for the heads up and National Stats.