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Iowa horticulture survey shows $48m in sales for the state

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey and Dr. Craig Chase from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach today announced the release of the Iowa Commercial Horticulture Survey. The data in the report is from the 2015 growing season and was collected in 2016 and analyzed this past winter.

ISU Extension and Outreach’s Local Foods Program team analyzed the data including an economic impact analysis provided by Dr. David Swenson of the Iowa State Department of Economics. That analysis showed that Iowa’s horticulture industry in 2015 generated more than $48 million in direct sales with an additional $32 million in value-added commerce

“Overall, the survey shows a vibrant horticulture industry in Iowa, one that is adapting to new technologies and evolving to meet the demands of consumers. It provides a lot of valuable information that can help farmers, researchers, agricultural-related businesses, and the general public in efforts to understand and grow the industry in Iowa,” Northey said. 

“It has been more than a decade since there has been a similar survey conducted and it is great to have updated information to better understand this section of Iowa agriculture.”

The newly published survey results are from 882 horticulture crop producers across the state. The data were recorded into an initial dataset by the Des Moines office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service. 

The wide-ranging picture gathered by the survey shows that the majority of Iowa’s horticulture farmers are relatively new to this agriculture sector, having grown commercial horticulture crops for 10 years or fewer.  The average horticulture farm size is approximately eight acres in size. Most survey respondents use horticulture crop production as means to supplement family income as opposed to deriving their main income from this type of agriculture.

A full digital version of the document along with additional detailed data appendices can also be on found on the Department’s website www.IowaAgriculture.gov under the “Hot Topics” section.

For more information:
Paul Ovrom
Department’s State Horticulturist
Tel: +1 515 242 6239

Publication date: 5/19/2017


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