Monterey County Farm Bureau

Annual Crop Report

2017 Monterey County Crop Report

Agricultural Commissioner Henry Gonzales announced on June 26th that the 2017 Crop Report reflects a production value of $4.4 billion for Monterey County, an increase of 4% over the prior year.  As stated by Commissioner Gonzales:

Crop values vary from year to year based on production, market
and weather conditions. Several of our top crops, including leaf
lettuce, head lettuce, broccoli and cauliflower, increased between 5% and 8%. Greater fresh strawberry production brought lower prices, resulting in a 4% drop in value, and foreign competition contributed
to significantly decreased processing strawberry values.

Large swings were noted in some smaller vegetable crops. Bok choy, Napa cabbage, parsley and
peppers dropped 20% to 52%, whereas the values of anise, artichokes, blackberries, chard,
kale, leeks, onions, and peas increased 35% to 174%. The category of livestock increased 26%
as ranchers restocked herds, and forage production increased with the rainfall. Once again,
we see the diversity of crop production in Monterey County provide resiliency and protection
against economic shocks.

We are proud to highlight the history of Monterey County agriculture in this year’s crop report. We hope you enjoy this “look back” at how Monterey County became one of the top agricultural counties in the state. In addition to photographs gleaned from local archives, an article by the former county historian provides a retrospective of the many factors shaping the landscape we see today. We also have contributions from the executive directors of two important organizations that have long supported our agricultural industry: the Monterey County Farm Bureau and the Grower-Shipper Association of Central California. A short film on the historical importance of agriculture can be found on the front page of the Agricultural Commissioner’s website. We hope you enjoy it!

It is always important to note that the figures provided here are gross values and do not represent
nor reflect net profit or loss experienced by individual growers or by the industry. Growers do not
have control over input costs such as fuel, fertilizers and packaging, nor can they significantly
affect market prices.

Link to the full 2017 Crop Report here.

If Monterey County were to be considered as a state, total production surpasses over twenty of the other states.  Production of 26 commodities exceeds the $12 million value mark, with 12 commodities exceeding $100 million.

Gonzales noted that Monterey County Ag production has exceeded $4 billion every year since 2012, demonstrating the diversity that is important to making our agricultural economy stable from year to year.. 

A short video on Monterey County' agricutlural history can be found on the Monterey County Agricultural Commissioner's website here.  The video highlights various aspects of the wine sector with interviews describing the evolution of farming in Monterey County.

Monterey County's Top 12 Crops in 2017:

  1. Leaf Lettuce = $829,750,000
  2. Strawberries = $685,758,000
  3. Head Lettuce = $502,508,000
  4. Broccoli = $410,403,000
  5. Nursery Stock = $256,103,000
  6. Wine Grapes = $239,027,000
  7. Cauliflower = $204,144,000
  8. Misc. Vegetables = $189,515,000
  9. Celery = $173,599,000
  10. Spinach = $135,104,000
  11. Mushrooms = $105,538,000
  12. Livestock & Poultry = $101,413,000

Note: all crop values are gross production amounts and do not represent profits on individual crops.

Monterey County is again the fourth highest Ag producing County in California, following Kern, Tulare, and Fresno Counties.

View a schedule of crops grown and harvested in Monterey County by season.

Ag Commissioner issues reports on local conservation efforts:

Water Conservation Principles (link)

Water Conservation at Bernardus Estate Vineyards (link)

Soil Conservation Principles (link)

Energy Conservation Principles (link)