Census of Agriculture: It Takes a Big Percentage to Raise Livestock
The 2017 ag census was recently released, and it shows that the highest percentage of total farm expenditures – 15.3 % – is spent on animal feed and that livestock, poultry and related expense take another 11.7 %. Remarkably, tractors and self-propelled farm machinery only account for 3.5 %.
The census is taken every five years and takes a year to report, but it is a robust report. You can drill down to the county level and learn what kind of revenue and expenses farming costs. Here are a few highlights:
- The average age of all producers is 57.5, up 1.2 years from 2012.
- More than any other age group, young producers make decisions regarding livestock, though the difference is slight.
- There are 321,261 young producers age 35 or less on 240,141 farms.
- Farms with young producers making decisions tend to be larger than average in both acres and sales.
- Farm expenses are $326 billion with feed, livestock purchased, hired labor, fertilizer and cash rents topping the list of farm expenses in 2017.
- In 2017, agricultural production in the U.S. was valued at $389 billion.
To learn the specifics, visit: https://www.nass.usda.gov/Publications/Highlights/index.php
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