Of the 7,755 farms across Massachusetts, 92.2 percent are considered family owned farms and almost 95 percent fit into the category of ‘small farms,’ according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In addition, Massachusetts is first in New England for direct sales of farm products to consumers. With sales of nearly $48 million, Massachusetts farmers were responsible for 30 percent of New England’s total direct sales and it ranks fifth nationally for direct market sales. This means when you buy local, you are likely supporting a local farm family.
DID YOU KNOW…
…Massachusetts ranks third in the United States for farmland value at $10,430 per acre, over four times the national average of $2,487.
…Massachusetts is the eighth most forested state in the United States with 62 percent of land classified as forested.
…The average farm operator has been on the same farm for 21 years and is 58 years old.
…Female farm operators account for 33 percent (2,507) of the farm operators in Massachusetts…nearly double the 2002 census of 1,305.
…Agritourism has increased almost 225 percent to $12 million, up from $5.3 million in2007.
…There are 198 organic farms in Massachusetts and orgnanic sales were up to $26.2 million in 2012 from $17.5 million in 2007.
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