According to the Stanislaus County 2018 Agricultural Report, released in August 2019, ag values dipped to $3.57 billion which is 2% or $78 million below 2017 values, but agriculture remains a steadfast industry in the county.
The Stanislaus County 2018 Agricultural Report which details the farm gate value of the various commodities produced throughout the County, notes that ag values dipped to $3.57 billion which is 2% or $78 million below 2017 values. However the report shows that agriculture in our county remains a steadfast and important industry in the county and across the world. And Stanislaus County ranks #5 in commodity values nationally when compared to other Counties in the United States.
Although some top commodities had large increases in total value, namely almonds and chickens, those increases were more than offset by decreases in walnut values due to global competition; fewer nursery fruit and nut trees and vines sold; persistent depressed milk prices nationally; and the fluctuation of turkey production within the county. Agricultural Commissioner, Milton O'Haire stated that, "although harvested almond acres increased by 8,496, overall harvested acres decreased countywide by 28,623 as a result of significant reductions in silage acres. As dairies close, silage acres used to feed cows are being transitioned to almond orchards which are young and still non-bearing." This exemplifies the trend over the past decade to permanent crops, mainly almond orchards which are a high value crop across the region.
A new Agricultural Economic Report produced this year quantifies agriculture's total economic contributions through production, local processing, employment, and economic multiplier effects to document agriculture's broader role in sustaining a thriving local economy. The report is based on 2017 agricultural and economic data and shows that agriculture contributed a total of $7.15 billion to the county economy, far exceeding the $3.65 billion figure from the Stanislaus County 2017 Agricultural Report. Agriculture supported 29,192 direct employees, just over one of every eight jobs in the county. Adding multiplier effects brought total agriculturally related employment to 34,425 jobs. The report also examines economic diversification within agriculture, which the authors say has important implications for countywide economic resiliency.
The reports are available on the Agricultural Commissioner's website.