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Farm King County

Farm Economy

Working to grow markets for local products, improve affordability of healthy foods, increase availability of produce at food banks, and increase demand for local products. The Local Food Initiative’s food economy target is to double demand for locally produced, healthy food from $93 million to $186 million in 10 years.

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Total sales of agricultural products

Target: Double demand for locally produced, healthy food from $93 million to $186 million in 10 years.

more about Sales of Agricultural Products >
Farmers market vendor sales

Target: Support and grow existing and emerging markets for selling locally-produced foods.

more about Farmers Markets >
King County farmers reporting food sold directly to consumers

Target: Increase access to direct market outlets among communities in King County, including local CSA programs, farmers markets, farm stands, and mobile markets.

more about Direct Sales to Consumers >
Incentives redeemed at farmers markets

Target: Increase the number of King County farmers markets with nutrition incentive programs for SNAP recipients and the total dollars redeemed, with emphasis on South King County.

more about Incentives >

Data overview

What do we know about King County’s 40 Farmers Markets in 2018?
In recognition of the value of farmers markets to the King County agriculture economy, King County collaborates with the WA State Farmers Market Association to collect, aggregate, and report data annually on farmers market vendor sales and shopper visits. In 2018, 35 of the 40 farmers markets in King County reported data, which includes 4 year-round farmers markets and 31 seasonal markets.

What is the Census of Agriculture?
The Census of Agriculture is a voluntary mail survey conducted by the US Department of Agriculture, which counts the number of U.S. farms and ranches and the people who operate them. Even small plots of land – whether rural or urban – count if $1,000 or more of agricultural products were produced and sold, or normally would have been sold, during the census year. The Census of Agriculture, conducted once every five years, looks at land use and ownership, operator characteristics, production practices, income, and expenditures.

Why is the Census of Agriculture important for King County?
The Census of Agriculture provides comprehensive agriculture data for every county in the nation. There are limitations to the Census due to the voluntary nature of the Census survey. Census surveys do not capture every farmer in the U.S., and the survey questions present categories that may not be relevant or applicable to every farmer. However, the Census is currently the best way to learn about producers and the value of agriculture, which can influence decisions that will shape the future of agriculture in King County. Because sampling methodology is relatively consistent from year-to-year, it provides an opportunity to compare among years and among regions.

Where can I find Census of Agriculture data?
You can find Census of Agriculture data online, where the information is available through their searchable online data base Quick Stats, their Census Data Query Tool, downloadable PDF reports, maps, and a variety of topic-specific products.