USDA has released its 1997 Census of Agriculture,
which shows that the 9,101 farms1 counted
in New Jersey sold $697.4 million worth of agricultural
products in 1997. The data also revealed that part-time
farming continues to play a significant role in the
Garden State, with 38 percent of farm operators working
200 days or more off the farm.
to the census, 61 percent of New Jersey farms sold
less than $10,000 worth of agricultural products
in 1997, unchanged from the 1992 census, while 37
percent of the farms recorded sales of less than
$2,500 in 1997. The 1997 census revealed other facts
about New Jersey's agriculture including:
five years, the Census of Agriculture takes a snapshot
of America's agriculture. As the only source of comprehensive,
comparable statistics for every county in the nation,
the census is an invaluable tool for assessing trends
and determining current needs of farmers and ranchers
at the local level.
census also shows national trends and averages. For
example, the 1997 census counted 1,911,859 farming
operations in the nation compared to 1,925,300 in
1992. From 1992 to 1997, average farm size decreased
nationwide from 491 to 487 acres and the average
expenses per farm rose from $67,928 to $78,771. Nationally,
the average value of products sold jumped from $84,459
facts and more for every county and state are now
available from the 1997 Census of Agriculture Highlights
Tables on the USDA/NASS website at http://www.usda.gov/nass/. More detailed
census reports will be released on March 20, 1999
on the Internet, on CD-ROM, and in printed publications.
For more information call 1-800-328-0179.
percent of the state's farm operators considered
farming to be their principal occupation. There
were 833,000 acres of farmland in state. The
average size of a New Jersey farm was 91 acres.
Two-thirds of the state=s farms cover less
than 50 acres.
average age of a farm operator was 55 years.
farm is defined as any place which produced and sold,
or normally would have sold, $1,000 or more of agricultural
products during the reference year.