It is National Agriculture Week!
Ag facts will be posted at the bottom of this blog post throughout the week. Many of these facts will be borrowed from friends throughout the week, so I am thanking those contributors in advance!
Check back for fun facts!
I need to get to know who my readers are a little better (I can’t tell you how much I have appreciated the feedback I have received via social media and during random conversation). I want to know today, what industry you are involved in pertaining to agricultural production. Again, more fun AgFacts.
March 5, 2012
- The average U.S. farmer raises enough food to feed 144 other people. In 1940, that number was 19.
- Americans spend only 10 percent of their income on food.
March 6, 2012
- Agriculture employs 14% of the U.S. workforce, or about 21 million people. This more than six times as many workers as the U.S. automotive industry.
- In 2011, agriculture boasted a trade surplus, exporting $132 billion in farm goods.
- According to a 2008 USDA study, agricultural exports generated 920,000 full-time jobs, including 608,000 in the nonfarm sector.
March 7, 2012
- MYTH: By eating less meat, Americans would improve the environment and free land and resources for the production of food crops rather than animal products that could be used to feed the hungry overseas.
- FACT: The optimal use of natural resources involves use of both animals and plants to produce the nutrients that humans require. For example, about half the land area of the United States is strictly grazing land – not suitable for crop production. That land would be of no use as a food resource if it were not for ruminant (four-stomach), grazing livestock. The United States has more than enough cropland to grow both feed grains and food crops.
March 8, 2012
- The most profitable side of the food business is in processing and marketing, not the farmer’s share. In fact, for every dollar that consumers spend on food, farmers receive just 20 cents.
- Of the $4.39 retail price of a box of cereal, farmers receive just 8 cents.
- Of the $3.99 retail price of a bag of potato chips, farmers receive less than 10 cents.
March 9, 2012
- Commodity policies in the 2008 farm bill cost less than one-quarter of one percent of the federal budget—about 25 cents out of every $100 paid in taxes.
- Only 11% of funding in the farm bill goes to farm policies.
- More than 84% of farm bill-related spending goes to food and nutrition programs like food stamps, not to farmers.
- Farm policy funding has fallen sharply in the last decade. It was slashed in the 2008 farm bill by $7.4 billion, and again in 2010 by $6 billion.
- U.S. farm policy costs Americans just 2.3 cents per meal of 6.9 cents a day.
- Compared to other major agricultural producers around the globe, the U.S. ranks near the bottom of the subsidization and tariff scale.
- Over the life of the 2008 farm bill, total conservation spending increases from $3.7 billion in 2008, to $7.15 billion in 2021, more than the amount for traditional farm policies.