Agriculture

Washington County has deep roots as a rural community where farming was, and still is, very important to the overall character and economic strength of the county.   Preserving our agricultural resources also provides opportunities to conserve and efficiently use other resources such as water, scenic, and environmentally sensitive features.

 

In terms of total revenue generated, agriculture and agriculture related industries represent the number one industry in Washington County; a $76.5 million  market value for products sold; $69,866,000 (91%) in livestock sales and $6,633,000 (9%) in crops sales.  Livestock and dairy are the major components of agricultural industry in the County.  Washington County is one of the largest livestock marketing centers east of the Mississippi, selling over $40 million in livestock annually between three markets located in the County; Tri-State Livestock Market, Abingdon Stockyard, and C H Cattle Company.  Tobacco, horticulture (vegetables and fruit, greenhouses and nurseries), Christmas trees, farm supply businesses, lending institutions and equipment dealers are integral crops or related businesses considered as a part of the agriculture industry in Washington County.  The agriculture industry employs 1,058 workers which represents $4.324 million in wages according to the 2012 Census of Agriculture.

 

In 2014, the Board of Supervisors created the County Agriculture Committee, established for the purpose of review, investigation, development of recommendations and reporting on matters that impact the agriculture industry in Washington County.  The list of current committee members include may be found here:  http://www.washcova.com/directory-of-boards-authorities-and-commissions/

 

`Washington County Agriculture Profile
  2012 2007 % Change
Number of Farms 1,602 1,791 -11
Land in Farms 192,123 acres 198,850 acres -3
Average Size of Farm 120 acres 111 acres +8
Market Value of Products Sold $76,500,000 $43,961,000 +74
Average Per Farm $47,753 $24,546 +95
Source:  2007 and 2012 Census of Agriculture

 

What makes up our agriculture industry?

  • Livestock and Dairy
  • Forages for livestock and dairy
  • Tobacco
  • Other agronomic crops
  • Horticulture (vegetables and fruit, greenhouses, and nursery)
  • Christmas trees
  • Farm supply
  • Lending institutions
  • Equipment dealers
  • Livestock markets

 

 

Washington County By the Numbers

  • Farms – 1,791 (1st in state)
  • Cattle and Calves – 66,000 (3rd in state)
  • Sheep and lambs – 7,649 (1st in state)
  • Goats – 3,773 (1st in state)
  • Horses – 2,886 (5th in state)
  • Eggs – 1st in state