Monterey County Farm Bureau

Facts, Figures & FAQs

Farming supports local families: nearly 1 in 4 households relies on income related to agriculture which supports 76,000 jobs.

Farming supports the local economy: In addition to crops produced, Agriculture contributes over $4 billion per year to Monterey County’s economic output, with a total estimated impact of over $8.1 billion on the local economy.

Monterey County feeds our Nation: crops grown in Monterey County supply large percentages of total national pounds produced each year:  61% of leaf lettuce, 57% of celery, 56% of head lettuce, 48% of broccoli, 38% of spinach, 30% of cauliflower, 28% of strawberries, and 3.6% of wine grapes.

Farming provides a healthy local food supply: Monterey County farmers are among the most productive and efficient in the world, growing more than 150 crops.

Farmers care about our natural resources: irrigation water use has decreased by 15% in the past two decades due to irrigation efficiency practices and new technology, while increasing crop production values by 45%.

We are a local voice for agriculture: Monterey County Farm Bureau has been working to sustain local food and farmers since 1917.

Farming shapes the local landscape: for every acre of buildings and pavement in Monterey County there are four acres of strawberries, lettuce, grapes, or other crops.

Farming supports local communities: Agriculture generates tax revenues for Monterey County supporting services that enhance everyone’s quality of life.


  • What are the Top Crops Produced in Monterey County?
    Leaf Lettuce, Strawberries, Head Lettuce, Broccoli, Wine Grapes, Cauliflower, Nursery Products, Celery and Spinach
  • Which crop increased production the most in the past 5 years?
    Wine grape production value increased by 28.5% in 2016
  • How many acres produce crops in Monterey County?
    393,315 acres in current production including range lands
  • How much of crop production on irrigated lands are using drip irrigation tape?
    Approx. 72% of crops utilize water-conserving drip irrigation tape as their main delivery method for irrigation
  • How many acres of crop production utilize time clocks to maintain irrigation applications?
    153,715 acres utilize time clocks and pressure switches to maintain schedules
  • How many acres of crop production are in organic products? 68,868 acres, increase of 68% year-to-year, with gross sales of $412,347,000
  • What is the total pounds of crops exported from the Salinas Valley region?
    398,985,000 pounds of fruits and vegetables are exported to other countries (2018)
  • What crops are the leaders in exported fruits and vegetables?
    Lettuce, Strawberries, Celery, Boccoli, and Cauliflower
  • What are Monterey County's largest trading partners, internationally?
    Canada, Taiwan, Mexico, Japan, Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, European Union, and UAE


2017 Farms & Land in Farms Reporting (courtesy of USDA)

  • Number of U.S. farms is estimated to be at 2.04 million, a decrease of 3.2% from 2012
  • Total U.S. land in farms decreased by 12 million acres from 2012 to 900 million total acres
  • Approximately 1.56 million farms report income of less than $50,000 annually
  • Just 105,453 farms produced 75% of all sales in 2017, down from 119,908 in 2012.
  • The average farm size continued remained at 441 acres/farm.
  • Farms generating $1 million or more in farm gate value represent 2/3 of the total farmgate value of $389 billion.
  • Only 43.6% of farm had positive net cash farm income in 2017.