Most U.S. Farms are Family Operated

Randall Weiseman Alabama, Cattle, Citrus, Field Crops, Florida, Forestry, General, Georgia, Livestock, Nursery Crops, Specialty Crops

farmer-in-tractor-preparing-land-with-cultivatorA new report by the U.S. Department of Agriculture released last week shows 99 percent of U.S. farms were family farms in 2015. Family farms, according to USDA, are classified as a farm where the principal operator and his or her relatives owned the majority of the business.

The report shows that small family farms—those with less than $350,000 in annual gross cash farm income—accounted for about 90 percent of U.S. farms, half of all farmland, and a quarter of the value of production. Midsize and large-scale family farms, which have at least $350,000 in gross farm cash income, made up only nine percent of U.S. farms -but contributed most of the value of production.

Over the past 25 years, production has shifted to midsize and large-scale farms. However, small family farms did produce a relatively large share of two commodities in 2015: 57 percent of all poultry and eggs and 52 percent of the nation’s hay crop.

(From the National Association of Farm Broadcasters News Service)