PDT Staff Writer
In an effort to start an annual tradition, the Scioto County Commissioners proclaimed March 17-23 as National Agricultural Week in Scioto County.
“A lot of people do not realize how important agricultural is to the economy. For us it seems intuitive, you just know it’s important. But, there is a fair number of people that don’t know, that includes a lot of people in our area,” said Wyatt Bates, President of the Scioto County Farm Bureau.
He said there is a misconception that the majority of what you pay for food goes back to the farm.
According to information provided from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). One pound of bacon retails for $5.33 in which the farmer receives $0.85. One pound of bread retails for $2.99 in which the farmer receives $0.19. One dozen eggs retails for $3.49 in which the farmer receives $1.06 and one gallon of fat free milk retails for $4.19 in which the farmer receives $1.72.
According to information provided by the Scioto County Farm Bureau, throughout Ohio there are 75,000 farms that average 184 acres totaling 13.9 million acres of farm land in the state. Ohio leads the nation in the production of Swiss cheese. Ohio has 3,400 beekeepers containing 29,900 bee colonies.
Ohio harvested more than one million pounds of tomatoes in 2008. The state is ranked fifth for fresh tomato production and third for processing tomatoes. Ohio dairy cattle produce more than 5.13 billion pounds of milk each year and Ohio poultry produce 7.1 billion, or 592 million dozen eggs each year. Ohio’s agriculture industry contributed $92 billion to the state’s economic growth and employs one in seven Ohioans.
“This gives you an idea how important agriculture is to Ohio,” Bates said.
In Scioto County, 2011 crop numbers indicated there were 14,000 ares of soybeans harvested, 6,600 acres of corn for grain harvested.
There are 755 farms in Scioto County with an average size of 135 acres, based on a 2007 Census of Agriculture. In total there are 102,025 acres of farm land in Scioto County.
Based on 2010 cash receipts from marketing of farm commodities, Scioto County farmers had $3,184,000 in corn, $6,758,000 in soybean crops, $5,833,00 in poultry and other live stock. In total there were $19,585,000 in Scioto County.
It was also announced the annual AG Adventure Day will be held May 8 at the Scioto County Fairgrounds. This is a day in which 550 Scioto County fourth graders from Scioto County to learn about local agriculture.
Wayne Allen may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 228, or firstname.lastname@example.org.