More Than You’d Think

June 10, 2009 07:00 PM
 

Linda Smith, Top Producer Executive Editor
 
Knowing that the average age of farmers is in the mid-50s, you might be surprised to learn that using USDA's definition of a beginning farmer/rancher (in business for 10 years or less), they make up about a quarter of operators.
 
  • 15% = principal beginning operators (new farms)
  • 7% = other beginning operators on new farms
  • 3% = less experienced operators on established farms
 
The most beginning farms produce poultry; the least, cotton and rice:
Poultry 20%
Dairy 17%
Cattle 16%
Cash grains 15%
Nursery / Vegetables 10%
Other 8%
Hogs 6%
Fruit / Tree Nuts 5%
Cotton / Rice 3%
 
As you might expect, beginning farmers/ranchers account for a smaller percentage of production: Although 22% of all farms are beginning farms, they produce only 10% of the value of all ag products and account for only 10% of the land in farm operations. They represent the highest percent of poultry production, at 20%, and the least of cash grains, at about 6%.
 

 

 
You can e-mail Linda Smith at lsmith@farmjournal.com.
Back to news

Comments

 

Rate this News Article:

Spell Check

No comments have been posted to this News Article

Close