Monday, April 05, 2010

On Job Creation—Local Fruits and Vegetables vs. Corn and Soybeans |

On Job Creation—Local Fruits and Vegetables vs. Corn and Soybeans |

Informative writing on regional economics (upper midwest) and the driving potential of local production.

From's blog:
Some key findings on the economic impacts on the region as a whole:

  • Increased fruit and vegetable production in the six states could mean $882 million in sales at the farm level, and more than 9,300 jobs. Corn and soybean production on that same acreage would support only 2,578 jobs.
  • If half of the increased production was sold in farmer-owned stores, it would require 1,405 such stores staffed by 9,652 people.
The full study new study by the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State University.

This is consistent with findings in numerous local food studies: economic, profitable, sustainable, and not requiring extensive subsidy beyond instantiation of infrastructures (say, processing facilities). 

See also Grower To Grower from for some of the dynamics of smaller scale farms. Big bucks from small acres. University of Illinois Extension circa 2002 found a lot of "takers" for small scale farming; some of it purpose-driven, funding college, a new boat, or to pay down a mortgage, etc. I don't have a link at hand for that one.

Photograph: Mike Glodo, Small Jonathan and Stayman Apples from Southern Illinois

No comments :