Report: California animal agriculture is a job creator

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Over the past decade, California dairies, ranches and livestock farms have created 17,000 jobs for the state. A new report that analyzes federal data from 2000 to 2010 shows that the $289 billion a year animal agriculture industry has grown in California, buoying the state’s position as one of the top farm economies in the nation.

The report, prepared by Promar International, estimates that in 2010, animal-ag impacted national household earnings by $51 billion and sustained more than 1.8 million jobs across all states. But the economic benefits of animal agriculture extended beyond the private sector. According to the report, the federal government generates an extra $13 billion in income tax revenue from livestock and dairy farmers each year, while states garner some $6 billion from agricultural property taxes.

The report notes that California saw some of the biggest increases in total economic impact from animal agriculture since 2000, which was mainly induced by the state’s burgeoning dairy and beef sectors. These sectors employ many people in the transportation and processing of their products. California is one of a handful of states where the industry’s employment impact has topped 100,000 jobs in all. The Golden State also saw the largest increase in tax revenue from animal-ag over the ten-year period covered by the study.

California will remain a growth state for animal agriculture employment in the long-term, says the report. Other states that have gained more than 10,000 animal-ag related jobs from 2000 to 2010 include Iowa, Idaho, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Oklahoma. States that have lost a significant number of jobs due to a contraction in animal agriculture include Arkansas, Colorado, Florida and Utah.

To read the full report along with detailed data visit here (PDF).