NC State University Economist Mike Walden has released updated information on the impact of agriculture and agribusiness on North Carolina and these numbers are good.
North Carolina Ag Commissioner Steve Troxler:
“Agriculture and agribusiness continue to make up the state’s leading industry with an economic impact of $78 billion, a $900 billion increase from the previous study. The current data is from 2012 and that was a record year for several NC crops.
The increases in farming offset some decreases in other sectors of the economy. There were decreases in wholeselling and retailing in the agriculture and food industry which could be a direct result of the recession and other factors.
My goal is to grow into a $100 billion annual business and we are on the way. We continue to move toward that goal. Our forestry products are also picking up and they combine for over $12 billion in economic impact.
When you think about what agriculture and agribusiness have done even during the recession, we have grown every year and its the leading economic engine, topping the military at $48 billion and tourism at $20 billion.”