KAREN PERRY STILLERMAN – Organic Farming is Growing (But Not Everywhere)

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently released the results of its latest survey of organic farmers, and there’s good news. Organic farming is up nationally, with 12,818 farms generating $6.2 billion in certified organic product sales in 2015, up 13 percent from 2014. But the survey shows that all states aren’t pursuing organic farming equally. And one of the top organic states may surprise you.

USDA started surveying organic farmers in 2008, and periodically reports survey data nationally and state-by-state. Last week’s 2015 Certified Organic Survey reveals the leaders:

  • Predictably, California is #1 in organic farms (2,637), acres (790,413), and product sales ($2.4 billion, accounting for 40 percent of the national total).
  • Perhaps more surprisingly, Wisconsin is #2. More on that in a minute.
  • Other leading states are concentrated in the Eastern U.S.(New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Maine) and on the West coast (Washington and Oregon).

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